About the Band
The Salem Bottom Boys originated in the winter of 1983. The band members were Ronnie Wagner, Jamie Leppo, and Paul Dix. With some of them still in school at the time, the three of them stayed together throughout the years. They found themselves playing local gigs, family parties, local contests, and most of all for their own amusement.
The band has changed members over the years. Some years they seldom played music together. It was strictly just for fun. With relationships, college, and work occupying the majority of their time, the band began to fade.
In the 1990's, everyone began to settle down and get married. At this point, the music became a good reason to get old friends back together again for some Saturday night fun with Jamie Leppo playing guitar and singing most of the lead and various other parts. At the time, Paul Dix was on the Mandolin, and Ronnie Wagner playing the Bass Fiddle and singing tenor and lead.
The three of them together came to meet a new talent This new talent was Noah Schaeffer, who joined the group in the mid 1990's. He plays the Banjo with a great sense of melody, and learned to sing a fine, unique baritone. The Salem Bottom Boys knew they had to have him. The next member to join the group was Dan Lyons. Having played music with Ronnie and Jamie in the 1980's, he was no stranger. Dan had belonged to another band back then, and had taught them a thing or two about entertaining a crowd. Danny, playing the Dobro and singing lead on some of the songs, also sings bass on some of the quartets. He flat out keeps the audience entertained with his great sense of humor. In 2004, Paul Dix chose to retire from the band to dedicate more time to his family. Desperately looking a new Mandolin player, the boys found an old friend whom they'd played music with in the 80's as well. Jim Frazier was an excellent guitar player, and said he would be up for a new challenge of learning the Mandolin. He would try to fill the position, and that's exactly what he did. He has been a great asset to the band since.
All the band members are originally from Carroll County, Maryland and still make it their home. The band has always built their foundation on Bluegrass music, but Bluegrass goes hand in hand with Bluegrass Gospel. You can't have one without the other. Striving for perfect harmony the boys let the instruments fill in the background. With more and more people hearing and learning of their Gospel songs, The Salem Bottom Boys were soon invited to numerous churches to play for services, picnics, and coffee houses. Now they are playing at both Bluegrass and Gospel shows, with neither taking a backseat to the other.
After twenty some years of playing together, The Salem Bottom Boys number one goal is to keep the music fun and enjoyable, and not make it seem like work. Making family and friendship their first priority has always been their rule. The band would like to thank their friends, family, and fans for persuading them to keep moving forward with the music.
For Booking information, please call
JAMIE LEPPO @ 410.984.4553