The United States Navy Band Country Current is the Navy’s premiere country-bluegrass ensemble. Under the direction of Senior Chief Musician Keith Arneson, Country Current is nationally renowned for its versatility and “eye-popping” musicianship, performing a blend of modern country music and cutting-edge bluegrass.
This seven member ensemble employs musicians from diverse backgrounds with extensive high-profile recording and touring experience in the music scenes of Nashville, Tenn., New York, New Orleans and more. In the tradition of country music, each member is a skilled performer on multiple instruments. The band utilizes banjo, acoustic guitar, electric guitar, mandolin, fiddle, electric bass, upright bass, dobro, pedal steel guitar and drum set.
Formed in 1973 by legendary banjoist Bill Emerson, the band has a rich legacy of notable alumni including Wayne Taylor, Jerry Gilmore, and Frank Sollivan. They have performed at the Grand Ole Opry, for Presidents Jimmy Carter, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama, and overseas in Stockholm, Nova Scotia and Beijing. With a fun-filled and family-friendly stage show, Country Current has been delighting its fans for nearly 40 years with their musical virtuosity and humor.
A staple of the bluegrass scene, Country Current has shared the stage with music luminaries Rhonda Vincent, Dailey and Vincent, Mountain Heart, Little Roy Lewis, Third Time Out, The Lonesome River Band, Josh Williams, The Seldom Scene, J.D. Crowe, Doyle Lawson, Ned Luberecki, Chris Jones and many others. Country Current routinely performs at bluegrass festivals such as Darrington, Windgap, Gettysburg, Lake Havasu and Grass Valley. In 2011, Country Current became the first military band to perform at the South by Southwest music festival in Austin, Texas.
Country Current performs regularly for the president, vice-president, the secretary of the Navy, the chief of naval operations, the chairman and vice-chairman of the Joint Chiefs Of Staff, the master chief petty officer of the Navy and numerous other dignitaries. Reaching out to communities both locally and nationally, they regularly perform for veterans, elementary schools, and in support of our active-duty Sailors.