Curly Seckler at National Folk Festival – updated

Curly Seckler will be starting a busy month with an appearance at the National Folk Festival this Saturday, September 3. [See update below]

The National Folk Festival takes place on Nashville’s Downtown Bicentennial Mall and attendance is free. Seckler is scheduled to perform and participate in a Q&A program focusing on early country music performers. The 3:45 p.m. slot, Country Music on Sponsored Radio, is hosted by country music historian and IBMA Board member Craig Havighurst. Also scheduled to participate are Jesse McReynolds, Donna and Patsy Stoneman, and DeFord Bailey, Jr.

The segment is part of the comprehensive Tennessee Folklife feature that embraces such topics as Roots and Branches, Behind the Scenes in Music City, Songwriting from Family and Tradition, Studio Musicians in Nashville, Traditional Vocal Styles, the Blue Grass Boys Remember Bill Monroe, the Fisk Jubilee Singers, the Southern Gospel Tradition, Making Music across Generations, and Fiddling and Fiddle Styles.

As you can see, there’s a lot to interest bluegrass music fans. For more information, visit

While writing of Seckler’s activities, we are saddened to report the passing of his older brother George Sechler on August 5. He was 92.

George was the fiddle player in the Yodeling Rangers and The Trail Riders, which also included Curly on tenor banjo, brothers Marvin and Duard  on guitars, and Murray Belk on washboard, jug and comedy. The group performed over WSTP radio in Salisbury, North Carolina, during the 1930s and early 1940s.

George Sechler had been living with his daughter’s family in Texas for the last few years.

Sechler is the formal spelling of their family name.

UPDATE 1:57 p.m. – This note just arrived from Curly’s manager, Penny Parsons…

“Unfortunately, we made the decision to cancel Curly’s appearance at the National Folk Festival this Saturday. The weather forecast for Nashville tomorrow is 100 degrees, and we are concerned about its effect on Curly’s health. Being outside in 100 degree heat at age 91 is risky, and at 3:00 PM in downtown Nashville, with all the pavement soaking up the heat, the heat index is likely to be up toward 110.

So reluctantly Curly has opted not to appear. We still plan to be in Owensboro next week and in Bean Blossom the following week.”

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About the Author

Richard Thompson

Richard F. Thompson is a long-standing free-lance writer specialising in bluegrass music topics. A two-time Editor of British Bluegrass News, he has been seriously interested in bluegrass music since about 1970. As well as contributing to that magazine, he has, in the past 30 plus years, had articles published by Country Music World, International Country Music News, Country Music People, Bluegrass Unlimited, MoonShiner (the Japanese bluegrass music journal) and Bluegrass Europe. He wrote the annotated series I'm On My Way Back To Old Kentucky, a daily memorial to Bill Monroe that culminated with an acknowledgement of what would have been his 100th birthday, on September 13, 2011.