Gary Nichols Leaves the SteelDrivers, Adam Wakefield Fills In
The SteelDrivers have lost their lead singer and guitarist. On Thursday (Aug. 24), the bluegrass band shared that Gary Nichols is no longer with the group.
"The SteelDrivers and Gary Nichols have parted ways. We wish him only the best," a statement posted to Facebook reads. "We are looking forward to seeing you on the road this fall. We are excited about our next chapter and we are getting our new music for you guys ready as we speak. We will be out there rocking harder than ever."
No further details about Nichols' departure from the SteelDrivers have been made available. In May, the SteelDrivers revealed that Nichols would be taking some time off from touring with the band "to take care of an unforeseen medical issue," though no additional information was disclosed. At that time, the band noted in a statement that "this time away from the band will be difficult for him ... but he really needs this time off so that he can have the proper time to mend."
In Nichols' place, the SteelDrivers have enlisted Adam Wakefield, The Voice's Season 10 runner-up. Wakefield toured with the band during Nichols' medical-related absence earlier this summer as well.
"Adam is a gritty singer-songwriter and guitar player with a large soulful voice. We are thrilled that he is able to help us out!" the band shared in May. On Thursday, they added on Facebook, "He's got PIPES!"
The SteelDrivers, formed in 2005, have dealt with losing band members before: In fact, Nichols joined the band in 2010, following the departure of Chris Stapleton, who himself joined the group in 2008, prior to the release of their self-titled debut album. In 2011, one of the SteelDrivers' founding members, Mike Henderson, left the group as well.
"More news coming later," the SteelDrivers say, "but for now, rest assured that we'll be rockin' the grass this fall."