Nash Street (Student)

Nash Street

Starkville-based Bluegrass band Nash Street, featuring MSU alumni and students Jason Graham, 23, Hannah Melby, 22, Daniel Hare, 21, Clay Lezon, 23, and Starkville High senior Caroline Melby, 18, gained national exposure and a $100,000 payday when the quintet claimed the top spot in the 2008 Colgate Country Showdown National Finals.

Since winning the high-profile country music talent contest, they have shared the stage with some of the industry's hottest up-and-coming young acts, including American Idol stars Kellie Pickler and Bucky Covington.

"This opportunity has introduced us to many people in the business," Hannah Melby said. "Having the chance to meet and learn what this industry is all about from those on the inside—things we never would have dreamed of—has been the best part so far."

Utilizing Graham's smooth vocals, Hannah Melby's intense fiddle sawyering, the melancholy tones of the mandolin by Caroline Melby, Lezon's flat picking on guitar, and Hare's brooding bass, Nash Street creates a unique blend of country and bluegrass they call "grassroots country."

Nash Street has recorded two albums, the most recent of which, "Carry On," is their first foray into original music.

See the band's web site and or their Myspace page.