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Carrier to play Market Square: Ashland band has been rocking since 1975

One of the more popular Ashland, Kentucky bands will be playing tonight at the pavilion in Market Square as part of Ironton aLive’s Tuesday Night Concert series.

Carrier is a classic rock band that was formed in 1975 by four boys at Fairview High School.

“This is a very popular group and a big crowd is expected, the weather should be great,” said Sam Heighton, executive director of Ironton aLive.

Jeff Preston, Denver Rice, Dave Little, and John Thompson started a bluegrass band called Cherokee in 1974 but decided they wanted to rock and reformed as Carrier.

From 1976-79 Carrier was joined by Bill Lucas and Jim Rice replacing Thompson on drums. In 1982, Carrier won the Battle of the Bands at the Paramount Arts Center performing the Tommy Tutone song “867-5309/Jenny”, and an original tune, “Mountain Man.”

Little left the group and was replaced by Ed Fields on guitar, Steve Wurts joined as drummer and Lucas produced the first and only Carrier album in the early 80’s. The album consisted of all original material written by Rice. Following a sold out show at the Paramount Arts Center Carrier expanded to a seven-piece group with the addition of Vance Kendricks and Marshall Damron.

The group took a hiatus during the mid 80’s only to re-emerge in the mid 90’s. The band still performs frequently.

The current lineup consists of Preston on guitar and keyboards, Jeff Ware on bass and vocals and Jason Kouns on guitar and vocals.

The concert is free, starts at 6:30 p.m. and are at Farmers Market Square in downtown Ironton. In the event of bad weather, the concert will take place at the Ro-Na Theater, one block away on South Third Street. People are encouraged to bring lawn chairs.

This year’s sponsors of the Tuesday Night Concert series are Glockner Dealerships, Phillips Funeral Home, Gold Street Muffler, Central Hardware, Citizens Deposit Bank, Holiday Inn of Ironton, Perry Distributing, J&J General Maintenance, Armory Smoke House, Servpro of Southern Scioto and Lawrence Co., Portable Solutions Inc. and Scherer Mountain Insurance.