Banjo NewsLetter

We heard this weekend from Donald Nitchie, editor of the venerable Banjo NewsLetter, with some info about the upcoming June issue.

The cover feature is an interview with Tom Boyd from Dry Branch Fire Squad, conducted by Greg Cahill from Special Consensus.

Donald shared a brief overview…

Fans of the old-time bluegrass group Dry Branch Fire Squad will recognize Tom Boyd as the band’s banjo and Dobro player since 2005, but they might not be aware of his long involvement in bluegrass music. In the June issue of the Banjo Newsletter, banjo player Greg Cahill talks to Boyd about his fifty years in bluegrass, including his stints playing with such luminaries as Red Allen, Mac Wiseman, Hylo Brown, Benny Martin, Frank Wakefield, Earl Taylor and others. Of particular note, Tom can be heard on several classic Larry Sparks recordings from the late 1970s, including the ever popular John Deere Tractor.

“When Larry called me to play banjo with him, I jumped on it,” recalls Boyd. “And I enjoyed every minute of it. But it was some rough traveling back then. That was before bluegrass music really blossomed into what it is today, with all the great festivals to work. In those days, work was hard to come by. And so was income. So I did everything I could to supplement…”

The June issue also includes an interview with Alison Brown (and a tab transcription), a tab from Bill Emerson’s latest release, Eclipse, (transcribed by Bill Evans), and a review of Jayme Stone’s latest CD, Room of Wonder. Casey Henry also reports on Lynn Morris’ recent return to the stage, a profile of Tony Pass’ Almost Flathead Rims, and Tom Adams’ remembrance of Hazel Dickens.

You can find full details about Banjo NewsLetter online.

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About the Author

John Lawless

John had served as primary author and editor for The Bluegrass Blog from its launch in 2006 until being folded into Bluegrass Today in September of 2011. He continues in that capacity here, managing a strong team of columnists and correspondents.