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Kentucky.gov   Kentucky Arts Council

Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet
Kentucky Arts Council

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tom Musgrave
502-892-3122
tomr.musgrave@ky.gov

Morehead Traditional Musician is Kentucky Arts Council’s Featured Artist for January, February

“Through music I’ve had the opportunity to travel and meet people all over the world who feel connected to Kentucky through our music and culture.”
— Jesse Wells, Morehead musician and teacher

FRANKFORT, Ky. (Jan. 5, 2016) — Morehead musician Jesse Wells is the Kentucky Arts Council’s featured artist for January and February.

Wells began his fascination with music at a young age, learning to play the mandolin at age 4.

“My dad handed me his mandolin, a very nice R.L. Givens A-style mandolin, when I was 4 years old. He said, ‘If you learn 20 tunes, I’ll give it to you,’” Wells said. “It didn’t take me long to take him up on his offer.

Wells is a member of the arts council’s Performing Artists Directory via his participation in the group Kentucky Wildhorse. He has also been a recipient of a Kentucky Arts Council Folk and Traditional Arts Apprenticeship Grant. Since 2001, he has been an instructor and music archivist for the Kentucky Center for Traditional Music at Morehead State University.

As a performer, mentor and musical scholar, Wells said music has afforded him many unforgettable experiences.

“Through music I’ve had the opportunity to travel and meet people all over the world who feel connected to Kentucky through our music and culture,” Wells said. “I feel blessed every day to get to do what I do: Make music with friends and share the stories of Kentucky’s music and people.”

To learn more about Wells, visit the arts council's website. The featured artist’s page includes a story about his work, a video of Wells discussing his work and contact information for Wells.

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The Kentucky Arts Council, the state arts agency, fosters environments for Kentuckians to value, participate in and benefit from the arts. Kentucky Arts Council funding is provided by the Kentucky General Assembly and the National Endowment for the Arts.