Local Vocals: Sunrise Shadow

For the past two years Rick Gustaitis, Jason Bodenhamer and Melanie Bodenhamer have been entertaining their audiences with their ‘Acoustic Americana’ sounds, focusing on the harmonies of Folk, Country and Acoustic as the band known as Sunrise Shadow.

Rick Gustaitis – Vocals, Guitar, Baritone Guitar, Mandolin

114---LocalVocalsAugustRicks-shoot-2-(83-of-162)-copy-RESIZED As an Ohio native, Rick Gustaitis knew the winter of his home state and the lack of access to beaches and mountain would one day take him to another place, and in 1998, he moved to the Lewisville, NC area. Music has been a part of Rick’s life since the first time he heard sound come from a radio. “I remember hearing the Beatles for the first time at the age of 9 in 1963 and thought, ‘that is what I want to do.’ I bought my first album when I was 10 and I have been to over 400 concerts in my life, ranging from jazz, to country and rock. I grew up on Motown, Rolling Stones, Zeppelin and Johnny Cash, so my love of music is well-rounded,” said Rick. With his talent and skill on the guitar and mandolin self-taught, Rick took a guitar he inherited from his grandfather and began playing at 16, began writing songs at 17 and bought a Les Paul and formed his own band with friends in the late ‘70s. Since joining up with Jason and Melanie, Rick has continued to learn about harmonies from Jason.

Jason Bodenhamer – Vocals, Guitar, Mandolin, Banjo, Dobro

Jason Bodenhamer, a native of Pfafftown, NC, now living in Westfield, NC, began his love of music at a young age, playing piano and organ as a young child and then taking up guitar in college. “I fell in love with bluegrass and started playing around with all the typical bluegrass instruments. I met my wife Melanie in 1998 and taught her how to play the upright bass and we have been playing music ever since. Melanie and I have been heading up some form of bluegrass jam since 1998 and we now hold those jam sessions at our church, Nazareth Lutheran Church, in Rural Hall, NC. Since forming Sunrise Shadow, Rick, Melanie and I have been bringing a new creativity and passion to our music. Being able to play a wide variety of instruments and music from different styles has proven to be a lot of fun. The best part of it all is the reaction we get from people who come to see us. There’s an honest interaction between us and the crowd that makes every show just a little different and I hope people enjoy it,” Jason commented.

Melanie Bodenhamer – Vocals, Bass

As wife to Jason Bodenhamer, band member and mom to sons, Lee and Jackson, Melanie is quite busy, but loves sharing music with Jason and meeting those114---LocalVocalsAugust-SunriseShadowBandRicks-shoot-2-(7-of-162)-copy-RESIZED in their audience. “Growing up in Mt. Airy, NC, I started singing in church during my high school years and developed a new love of music. After meeting my husband Jason and learning bass from him, I started playing bluegrass music. I enjoy a higher level of satisfaction with the trio music because of its wide variety and its appeal to more people. Connecting with an audience during a show is the best feeling and Jason, Rick and I love meeting everyone who comes to see Sunrise Shadow,” stated Melanie.

Sunrise Shadow plays at local wineries, restaurants and private parties, but are open to all venue offers. When not performing, Rick, Jason and Melanie are collaborating on an upcoming CD featuring original songs. “We plan on recording a CD of original music written by Rick and Jason in the next few months and will also release a CD of our popular cover tunes. Hopefully we will one day record a live CD and, as always, continue to improve on our skills as musicians,” Melanie said.


For more information on Sunrise Shadow and upcoming events, visit www.sunriseshadowband.com or ‘like’ them at www.facebook.com/sunriseshadowband.