Hailing from Short Gap, West Virginia, Raines began playing bass and touring professionally as a teenager. Today she is a respected bluegrass musician, playing both straight-ahead bluegrass and more progressive forms of music.
She has worked with legends such as Mac Wiseman, Kenny Baker, Josh Graves, and Eddie & Martha Adcock to current artists such as Peter Rowan, Laurie Lewis, Dudley Connell, and Don Rigsby, and the Brother Boys.
Raines was a member of the progressive bluegrass band Cloud Valley with Bill Evans (banjo), Charlie Rancke (guitar), and Steve Smith (mandolin). They released two albums: A Bluegrass Ensemble in 1983 and Live In Europe in 1985.
Jim Hurst and Missy Raines
Missy Raines toured extensively from 1998- 2005 in a duo with Jim Hurst. They recorded two albums for the Pinecastle label: Two in 1999 and Synergy in 2003.
Claire Lynch Band
Missy and Jim re-joined the Claire Lynch Band in 2005 (along with David Harvey) when Lynch returned to the road after a hiatus. The band recorded two more albums: New Day and Crowd Favorites, both on Rounder Records. Missy left the band in 2008, asnd was replaced by Mark Schatz.
Missy Raines & the New Hip
In 2008, Missy established her Americana/jazz-tinged ensemble Missy Raines & The New Hip, who have released two albums on the Compass label: Inside Out released February 10, 2009, and New Frontier released September 2013. Besides Missy, the New Hip includes Ethan Ballinger (guitar), Jarrod Walker (mandolin), and Cody Walker drums.
Helen Highwater Stringband
Raines is a member of the bluegrass supergroup the Helen Highwater Stringband, along with Mike Compton, David Grier, and Shad Cobb. They released an eponymous EP in 2015.