Marty Wendell’s “Risky Business” Has Grammy’s Attention

For the second time in two years, Marty Wendell has been a Grammy contender for Best Americana Album.

In 2020, his album “Rock & Roll Days” was his first album to be recognized by the Recording Academy, making the final cut of albums from which the Nominations are made.  This year, his album “Risky Business” followed the same path.  

Marty Wendell

“Risky Business” was produced in Nashville by Chris Scruggs, who tours as part of Marty Stuart’s Superlatives and is the grandson of the legendary Earl Scruggs.  Over the last few years, Wendell has often been asked the question, “What has happened to country music?”  He decided that it would be a challenge to record an album that would reflect his idea of what a country album could be today, rooted in tradition, yet with a contemporary appeal. Scruggs shared the vision, and the album reflects his unique way of presenting Marty’s songs.

In addition, several guest artists became involved in the project and added their talents.  They include Nashville artists like Judy Rodman, who had #1 hits and has sung on hundreds of major albums. Jerry Fox, a founder of the Warner Brothers country rock hitmakers, Bandana.  Also from Nashville, Lindsey Scruggs, an exceptional singer/songwriter and another grandchild of Earl Scruggs. The creative Nashville writer/performer, Linda Mckenzie. Others include Tim Brick, a national artist based in Vermont, known for award-winning albums and songs; and Melody Guarino, a genuine country singer who fronts The Bluebillies, and who often shares the stage with Marty & His Tour Band. Within the family there’s Emily Quinn, one of Marty’s granddaughters who both writes and performs original songs, and his daughter-in-law Hillary Wendell, who has worked with Marty in the studio and sings backing vocals on the road. His co-producer and band leader son, Sean Wendell, contributes vocals on two of the songs. All of these artists helped Marty create a special soundscape that draws out the meaning of each song.

“Risky Business” also was nominated for Album of the Year at this year’s Capital Region Eddies Awards. Wendell has been inducted into both the Eddies Hall of Fame and the Rockabilly Hall of Fame. He has opened for numerous major artists, from Johnny Cash to Arlo Guthrie to Lacy J. Dalton, and will be back on the road in 2023.

Wendell records for Simply Twenty One Records and his albums are available on all digital sites. For more information visit:

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