The Bankesters • The Mast Farm Inn is honored to be one of the official sponsors of The Bankesters. The Bankester Family, discovered while playing in the parking lot of a bluegrass festival, was invited up to perform that very night on the main stage in front of the entire audience. Eight years later… "Looking Forward", the brand new CD from The Bankesters features twelve tracks of all new music produced by Stephen Mougin of The Sam Bush Band & Dark Shadow Recording.
"This new project "Looking Forward" by The Bankesters is an absolute pleasure to listen to from start to finish! The material, picking, and singing are truly inspiring and if you’re not already a fan, you WILL be! I first heard this group a few years ago and was impressed by all of their talent, but I believe this new recording will take them to an all new level of recognition. I have the good fortune of getting to hear a lot of wonderful groups and artists all over the country, but I am completely honest when I say that The Bankesters are a cut above. They are a real breath of fresh air." ~ Adam Steffey, The Boxcars
The Bankester Family is a true family band that’s leaving audiences and promoters across the country wanting more of their tight traditional, contemporary and gospel bluegrass featuring exceptional vocals and great instrumental chops. The Bankester Family really is one of those bands that was actually discovered in the parking lot at a bluegrass festival and invited up to perform that night. They only knew two songs at the time, but it was enough to get them hired for their first gig. Eight years, several hundred shows, thousands of miles, eleven states, three CDs, two vans and one son-in-law later, the family has matured into a fine-tuned band featuring exceptional vocals, with rock-solid instrumental backing.
"If you are a fan of music of any genre you can take a serious look at this band, and if you are a venue or festival, all I can say is that you can book these fine folks without further ado. They deliver on every promise in every way. Simply amazing." ~ Henri Deschamps, The Mast Farm Inn
Alysha Bankester, 17 years old, has been playing fiddle and singing in the band for several years and has recently taken over the mandolin duties from her older sister Lindsey. She and Emily still twin fiddle on a few tunes.
Emily Bankester, 20 years old, plays the fiddle as well as clawhammer banjo, and she sings lead and harmony vocals with the band. She teaches fiddle at home, and helps with the cooking and cleaning as well.
Melissa Triplett, 23 years old, plays bass as well as sings lead and harmony vocals. She teaches piano and bass, and is involved with local music organizations. She and Kyle have been married since June of 2008 .
Kyle Triplett, 24 years, has been with The Bankesters for over 3 years. While primarily holding down the banjo position, he also steps in on guitar, mandolin, and dobro.
Dorene Bankester, slightly younger than Phil, plays guitar and sings lead and harmony vocals. She is one of the most patient and dedicated wives and mothers around. She also loves used book stores!
Phil Bankester, slightly older than Dorene, is Dorene’s husband and the four girls’ father. He plays guitar, sings lead and harmony vocals, and drives a lot. He also handles the booking duties.
"The Bankesters were a big hit at the 2011 Red White and Bluegrass Festival. They are fantastic musicians with powerful voices that lift the soul. Definitely one of my favorites." ~ Gary Leonhardt, Red White and Bluegrass Festival
“I’ve known the Bankester Family for 3 years now and it’s such a blessing to watch the girls grow – but even more of a treat to watch the music develop and come together like a fine piece of art. “Somewhere in Between” showcases the great lead vocals from all of the family and staggering harmonies that only a family can create. I love the entire album!” ~ Jamie Johnson, The Grascals
"The third CD from this family band is a slice of bluegrass heaven thanks to the angelic voices of sisters Melissa Triplett and Emily and Alysha Bankester (parents Phil and Doreen contribute vocals as well, while son-in-law Kyle Triplett mans the banjo). “Dance to the St. Anne’s Reel” is delicate and lovely while also showing off the band’s picking prowess as they tear through a version of the reel to end the song. Meanwhile, the tender “My Love Will Follow You,” featuring Grascal Jamie Johnson, is one of the best bluegrass duets of the year." ~ Engine 145
"This recording captures the real essence of good music – great songs sung from the heart with great voices, and we’re glad to be a part of it." ~ Tom T. Hall