About Blue Plate Special
Blue Plate Special plays a blend of American roots music featuring strong three part vocal harmonies, mixed with the acoustic sounds of accordion, banjo, fiddle, guitar, mandolin, and upright bass.

Their latest CD, “Nowhere Fast” features 12 new original songs showcasing Blue Plate Special’s wide range of influences including bluegrass, swing, country, Cajun, polka, and  gospel. Two of the cuts on "Nowhere Fast" have been feature in nationaly aired documentaries.

Whether in a concert setting, casual party atmosphere or interactive children’s workshop, Blue Plate Special offers highly engaging performances. Their sheer love of what they do, resonates with audiences of all ages.


Dave Gross - singer/songwriter is a New Jersey native. His unique mandolin style is influenced by a wide range of mando players from western swing great Tiny Moore, to Dawg music innovator David Grisman. Dave also brings a strong traditional bluegrass influence into the band, always tipping his hat to Bill Monroe. Dave is widely known as the host of “On the Sunny Side” a bluegrass radio show on WFDU for over a decade. Dave is also Blue Plate Special’s producer/arranger, and tech-guru.
Jay Friedman – singer/songwriter, fiddle and guitar player hails from downstate New York. Jay has studied music since childhood, starting with piano and accordion. Her most recent passion is the fiddle. Jay’s vocal style helps define Blue Plate Special’s strong vocal sound. Her clever songwriting tells stories with a twist, drawing from all styles of music, from swing, bluegrass and country, to rhythm and blues.
Tom Wise -singer/songwriter, bass and harmonica player. Tom’s twangy, laid back vocals, reveal his midwestern heritage. His strong songwriting incorporates some wide-ranging musical influences including blues, swing and country. Tom’s ability to play bass, sing and wail on the harmonica make this multi instrumentalist a joy to behold.

James Hemp - guitar/vocals .  A slave to two masters bearing the same name, James grows bluegrass all day and plays bluegrass all night.  As a plant biology graduate student, James performs research in annual bluegrass at Rutgers University.  As a flatpick guitarist, this Oklahoma native produces generous yields of that freshly-picked bluegrass sound. You can usually find James at a local golf course, Mexican restaurant or indie rock show.