We got a note last week from our friend Big Mike Ramsey about an event that many of our readers will want to support. It’s a benefit show scheduled for this weekend (5/9) for John Shuffler, one of the unsung heroes from the early days of bluegrass music.
His brother George may be better known to bluegrass fans for his crosspicking guitar playing with the Stanleys, with whom John also spent time on bass. John suffered a stroke in February, and was hospitalized for almost 2 months. The show this weekend is to help with the unreimbursed medical expenses.
The show will be held at The Old Rock Schcool in Valdese, NC from 7:00-10:00 p.m. Scheduled to perform in a round robin concert are The John Shuffler Band, Strictly Clean and Decent, The Laurel Creek Band, Eric Ellis, David Johnson, Les Deaton, Alan Johnson, Rick Norris, Herb Lambert, David Wiseman and David Carswell. Russ Jordan will serve as M.C.
Ramsey, who played bass with Linville Ridge – and sired Mountain Heart’s scary good mandolinist, Aaron – shared a few thoughts about John…
“In Louisville, KY, during the IBMA, about 1999 or maybe 2000, Sonny Osborne came up with the idea of recognizing the notable ‘sidemen’ in bluegrass music’s relatively short history. This was done during the awards show.
As they were fading out at the end of each presentation/performance segment, to the gaps for radio advertising, they were scrolling names of these musicians being recognized. I squalled great big when I saw the name John Shuffler scroll by. I think Aaron & Perry Woodie about jumped out of the boxed seat section where we were seated.
I was glad they recognized John for his time spent with Ralph & Carter.
According to Ron Shuffler, this will be a donation only event, with rotating musicians in many and varied combinations with ALL the funds collected going to John Shuffler. If you come, you’ll probably get to see big old me playing bass for a bit and then if you watch closely, you’ll see big old me contribute to John’s funds as well.
The Rock School seats 473. We can get 500 people in there if they pull out chairs. Now, if the place was full, and everyone gave a $20 bill, that would generate $10,000 towards helping John with his medical bills.”
Anyone who is unable to attend, but who would like to make a contribution towards John’s medical expenses,you can send them to the following address:
PO Box 324
Pineola, NC 28662
Jamming in the lobby is both encouraged and expected.