The James Lee Band has been humbled to hear the positive response to their recently released sophomore album, titled “84”, from fans and local radio stations. Front man, Casey Lee Chytka, with his persistent, hard-working attitude and skillful songwriting, leads the group of five musicians. Every song lyric is inspired by growing up in rural Nebraska, while learning life’s hard lessons on becoming a man. With songs about young love, heartbreak, and all the good times along the way, this album is sure to resonate with the fans. This group of talented musicians has created a buzz in Nebraska and the Midwest since releasing their album in September of 2018. The twelve-track album takes you on a journey that all fans can relate to, young or old.
Casey Lee demonstrates amazing creativity and vulnerability with lyrics in songs such as Game of Cards, Moonshine Cherries, and Tears.
“In this life of kings, she’s my queen. Gonna give that girl a diamond ring. I’ll be her crazy eight. She’ll be my lucky seven. Ten just needs to find an ace worth eleven.” -- Games of Cards
“I took the risk, reaped the reward, got the girl like I hoped I would. She’s still the love of my life.” -- Moonshine Cherries
“It’s another shot of whiskey, and another round of beers. Another empty bottle that won’t drown out the tears.” -- Tears
The band was created by lead vocalist Casey Lee Chytka and former lead guitarist Matty James Landgren. The duo played small bars and backyard parties until their fanbase grew where it was necessary to obtain a fuller sound. A drummer, Scott Swanson, was added to the mix in 2013. Soon after Trevor Nekoliczak was added as the bass guitarist. In the summer of 2015 the JLB released their debut, self-titled EP. The six-song record made the regular rotation on local radio stations, and is a staple of the band’s live shows to this day. Matty and Scott left the band in late 2016 in order to focus on other business opportunities. This led to three new members being added to the band, along with a whole new sound. The current lineup of the JLB includes Casey Lee on lead vocals and acoustic guitar, Trevor Nekoliczak on lead guitar, Ryley Dugan on rhythm guitar, keyboard, mandolin, and backup vocals, Logan Stepp on bass guitar, and Clay Stepp on drums. These new members brought a sound all their own and their creativity is evident in the band’s sophomore album titled “84”. When asked to describe their sound, rhythm guitarist Ryley Dugan said, “It’s been interesting to see so many different musical backgrounds and genres come together so fast. We’ve constantly been evolving. From the first show to the most recent release of the album, we are always surprising ourselves with the sound we come up with. “
With all the buzz created by their new album, they have ventured out to the surrounding areas playing gigs in Colorado, South Dakota, Kansas, Iowa, and Nebraska. They’ve been heard at anything from weddings, local bars, county fairs, and town festivals. The band has been elated to share the stage with many artists such as Blackhawk, Sawyer Brown, Stoney Larue, Aaron Watson, Cody Johnson, and Chancey Williams and the Younger Brothers Band, just to name a few. Fans have described the JLB’s sound as falling in line with the likes of Josh Abbott Band, Bart Crow, and Read Southall, all the while still having a unique Nebraskan sound that stays true to their country roots. Their fan base continues to grow and they are hyped to travel to Idaho in June of 2019 to perform at the Highway 30 Music Festival.
The JLB couldn’t be happier with the friends and fans they have made along the road, and they keep setting higher goals. The JLB keeps pushing the envelope trying to get into different venues, in front of new fans, and always looking for opportunities to expand the reach of their music. Casey Lee describes this attitude as saying, “I’ve had a passion for music since I was just a little kid, and I always hoped to make my own someday. I love being able to take a storyline and turn it into something people can relate to based on their own life experiences. Everyone dances to their own tune and if I can get even just one person to enjoy our music, then it’s all worth it to me.”
Awards: 2017 Rocky Mountain Country Music Awards Male Vocalist of the Year - Casey "Lee" Chytka