The Buckstankle Boys are a group of young men born and raised in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia and North Carolina. Each one of them, having being brought up and schooled in the ways of traditional mountain music, decided to form a group to promote the older sounds of bluegrass and old-time music.
Wes Clifton (born in Mt. Airy, North Carolina) is the grandson of the legendary Verlen Clifton, who played mandolin for the Camp Creek Boys, the Smokey Valley Boys, and Ronald Collins’ Blue Ridge Entertainers. Wes began playing in rock bands as a young man, becoming interested in the traditional music of his region in his mid-twenties. Wes played guitar and mandolin with Benton Flippen’s Smokey Valley Boys for some of that group’s later years. He sings lead and plays guitar with the Buckstankle Boys.
Andy Edmonds (of Pilot Mountain, North Carolina) comes from a family of guitar and banjo players. He met the late, great Benton Flippen when he was a young man, and began playing guitar and banjo for his band, the Smokey Valley Boys. While playing with Benton for a over a decade, Andy learned a great deal about playing the fiddle. Though he is able to play a number of instruments, the fiddle has become his primary focus, and his fiddling has won numerous prizes at area fiddle contests. Andy plays fiddle for the Buckstankle Boys, as well as singing harmony and sometimes playing the guitar on sacred numbers.
Seth Boyd (born in Ferrum, Virginia) also comes from a rich musical family. Many members of the Boyd family play in oldtime band The Dryhill Draggers, and Seth played with that band for a number of years. Seth learned a great deal about the banjo from Larry Sigmon, and he also sometimes played guitar with the Smokey Valley Boys during the band’s later years. Seth is an accomplished banjo player, being adept in both the traditional clawhammer style as well as “Scruggs”-style three-finger banjo. His banjo playing has won a number of awards over the years. Seth handles banjo duties for the band, as well as singing harmony and taking the lead on some of the old-time numbers.
Todd Hiatt (of Mt. Airy, North Carolina) is the mandolin picker for the Buckstankle Boys. Todd starting playing guitar as a young man, and remembers competing (and winning 3rd place) in the youth guitar competition at the Mt. Airy Fiddlers’ Convention. He played a lot of music in church while growing up, accompanying his grandfather, Elmo Hiatt–a local Baptist preacher. Todd later picked up playing the mandolin, and has picked up ribbons at a number of fiddlers’ conventions. He leads the way on many an old number with his mandolin breaks.
Tim Eaves (of Mayodan, North Carolina) plays bass with the group. Tim’s interest in the upright bass came after years of playing and teaching electric bass. He bought his first bass about twenty years ago. He has played in theater shows, community concert band, and frequently in church. His first love however, is playing with the Buckstankle Boys.