Introducing the Chung Yen Band, a genre-bending rock quartet based in Lexington, Kentucky. Formed in late 2016, the Chung Yen Band is J.D. Wright, David Cubine, Jason Russo and Tom Covello. The four are veterans of 40-plus years of rock, blues, jazz, R&B, metal, punk, funk and singer-songwriter musical styles performing and recording throughout the U.S.
So why “Chung Yen” Band? All four are black-belt level members of the Chung Yen Central Shaolin martial arts organization based in Lexington, Kentucky and headed by Grandmaster Hiang Kwang Thè, hence their name. Wright and Cubine originally formed the progressive acoustic guitar duo the Chung Yen Twins in 2009, recording an album of originals and performing extensively in the Central Kentucky region. Adding Russo and Covello, the four discovered their artistic compatibility and mutual passion for a broad range of musical styles and improvisation. “It set the tone for our musical future together,” Cubine said.
Lead Guitar & Vocals
JD has been playing guitar for over 40 years and has toured with a variety of bands since 1980 including The Touch, Hijynx, and Neohurst. Major musical influences include Jimi Hendrix, Jimmy Page, Eddie Van Halen, George Benson, Joe Perry, and Peter Frampton. JD also works as a senior instructor at the SDML Music Academy having taught students that have performed for “The Voice,” and recorded successful albums with Wright as music producer.
Lead Vocals & Guitar
David originally formed the Chung Yen Twins duo with Wright and organized the formation of the four piece band. Cubine began playing guitar and keyboards as a teenager in Louisville. His major influences range from the Allman Brothers Band, Santana, Steely Dan and the Beatles to James Taylor, Crosby, Stills & Nash, Rosanne Cash and Jason Isbell.
Drums, Percussion & Vocals
Jason began playing piano at the age of six and percussion at the age of eight. He took up playing guitar and writing as a teenager and has a catalog of more than 50 original songs to date. Jason has toured nationally with several bands, including the indie rock band Stranglmartin and the Rolling Stone featured Brainsalad. With more than 30 years behind the drums, Jason’s percussion influences include Stewart Copeland of the Police, Gene Hoagland (Death, etc.), and Rod Morgenstein of the Dixie Dregs.
Growing up in the suburbs of New York City, Tom began playing guitar as a young teen before switching to bass. Some of his early influences included Jimi Hendrix, Johnny Winter, and Cream. Later on he came to love progressive rock and was influenced by bass players like Chris Squire of Yes. A graduate of the Berklee College of Music, Tom has had the privilege of playing with many different bands and all types of music from coast to coast including Albert King, John Hammond, The Drifters, and Bela Fleck. With an emphasis on creating a strong groove, he believes that the bass is the glue between the rhythm guitar and the drums.