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Talent & Toil: Breakout bluegrass star Billy Strings returns home for two-night ‘Thanksgiving Run’

If West Michigan native and rising Nashville prodigy Billy Strings is thankful for only one thing this Thanksgiving, it’s that he’ll finally get to spend at least one night back home.

Born William Apostol in Muir, about 40 miles east of Grand Rapids, Strings discovered his love for music and his raw natural talent at just four years old when his father — amateur bluegrass picker Terry Barber — put Strings’ first six-string in his hands. 

Earning his nickname from his aunt when he quickly developed a knack for several traditional bluegrass instruments, he studied the legends of the genre while keeping a keen eye on the changing world around him. 


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