Jay Buettner was born in Nipawin, Saskatchewan into a musical family. His grandfather and father both had an affinity for playing music and it greatly influenced Jay who started on his dad’s lap, sitting behind a chord organ memorizing the melodies his dad played.
While growing up, Jay had a hard time deciding whether to pursue drums or guitar. In a decision that would ultimately shape his career, he reasoned the guitar would be hardest for him to learn. So in going against the grain, he gave up his love of drums to focus his attention on the electric guitar.
At 14, Jay was introduced to the music of bands like Toto, Eagles, Journey and Steely Dan by a new friend that lived in a neighboring town. His own small town high school had canceled its music program but that didn’t stop Jay from progressing down his musical path. He took lessons at the local music shop and would eventually teach there himself.
After studying at Grant MacEwan College in Edmonton, Jay joined a country band and started playing professionally. The musical challenges of college were equaled by the challenge of living on the road and out of a suitcase. His career took a lucky turn in 1991 when he was invited to play with major label recording artist, Patricia Conroy. That opportunity yanked Jay out of the bar scene and onto a major touring circuit that included playing in the United States and Europe. It also led to becoming a freelance and studio guitarist and touring and recording with artists including Lisa Brokop, Aaron Pritchett, George Canyon and Bobby Wills.
In almost 30 years of playing music professionally, Jay has learned a lot about the industry and the value of things like perseverance, dedication and how to soak up the wisdom of musicians around him. The culmination of that experience has found him alongside friends and musical compatriots, creating the original music that is New Yank Yorkies.