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Sunday, March 22, 2009

Fiddling Fred Price

Well we have had our one day of spring and now we are stuck right back in the middle of winter with rain cold and below freezing temperatures.

Anyone that knows me or been around me knows I am a big fan of both country and bluegrass music. Growing up in Tennessee once a year the Fiddler's Convention would come to town with such great pickers like Tom Ashley, Doc Watson, G. B. Grayson, fred Price and Clint Howard and others I can't remember. Mountain City is known for its musicians. Most of them went on to have recording careers in the 30's 40's and 50's.


Fred's career began when he was a small boy and his dad brought home a guitar and thought he should learn to play it. He was picking tunes before supper. Clint's mother sang the old timey songs and Clint was taught to sing and play the guitar. They in turn instilled their love of music in their children.

My dad played harmonica and he loved to play. Every so often Fred Price, his son Kenny, daughter Lois and Clint Howard and his son Clarence would show up at our front door with their music instruments, ask my mother for a couple kitchen chairs. They would then proceed to sit down in our front room and play a three hour concert. That was some of the best bluegrass music I have ever heard.

Fred and Clint were known in the area as great musicians. They toured with Doc Watson and Tom Ashely and toured the country playing at The Smithsonian in Washington D C, Carneigie Hall as well as the University of California.

Click on any photo for larger image

They made some records and were featured in a story in Life Magazine. I believe they may have played the World's Fair when it was held in Knoxville, TN.

Clint Howard still sings some with Doc Watson, Fred and Clarence now play with a bluegrass band in heaven, Kenny and Lois still play together.
When I was in Tennessee here is a photo I snapped of Kenny Price teaching his great nephew Andrew to play the fiddle. And the memory of Fred Price lives on.



That's it for today.

1 comment:

Joe and Sherri said...

What great memories you have JJ. I hope that Sherri and I leave you with some when we come to visit.

Joe and Sherri