THE GRASCALS recently met one of their entertainment heroes when they appeared on NBC’s The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. Hollywood icon Robert DeNiro was also a guest, along with Sherri Shepherd (of The View).

“As if it wasn’t a big enough thrill to perform on The Tonight Show, and believe me, it was a huge thrill,” Terry Eldredge says, “ then we found out that Robert DeNiro would be on the same show. Robert DeNiro, man; ‘The Deer Hunter,’ ‘Goodfellas,’ ‘Taxi Driver.’ Now, that’s Hollywood!”

The two-time Academy Award winner, DeNiro, met with the band backstage and took time for a photo.

As musical guest, The Grascals closed the show with “Mystery Train” from their album Life Finds A Way (Mountain Home Music). The project is nominated for Best Bluegrass Album in the upcoming 55th annual Grammy Awards which will air on CBS February 10th.

“The Tonight Show experience was definitely a career highlight,” Danny Roberts says. “Everyone involved in that show is top-notch. Jay Leno is gracious and welcoming and that crew made us feel right at home. They all work hard and have a good time, which is the way we like to do it.”

The Grascals are nominated for Instrumental Group of the Year in the upcoming SPBGMA Awards to be held in Nashville. Soon after, they’ll make another appearance on The Grand Ole Opry as part of their busy 2013 schedule.

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Here are behind-the-scenes pictures of the performance.