Doug McKelway plays his Huber banjo on Huckabee

On last weekend’s Huckabee show, which airs on the Trinity Broadcasting Network (TBN), TV news anchor Doug McKelway joined host Mike Huckabee to talk about Centerpoint, a news program launching next week on TBN.

For years McKelway’s was a familiar face to viewers in the Washington, DC and greater capitol area market, where he hosted news programs on WRC-TV and WJLA-TV for nearly a decade. In 2010 he went national, as a DC correspondent for the Fox News network, and serving as a frequent guest host for their flagship Special Report at 6:00 p.m. (eastern).

Earlier this year, Doug retired from Fox News, he and his wife moved from DC to Florida, and began the life of leisure on the beach. But they weren’t footloose and fancy free for long, as TBN reached out to gauge his interest in co-hosting a new national news program. In the end, they decided that the offer was too good to turn down, so he will be commuting each work week from he and his wife Susan’s retirement dream home on Amelia Island, FL, to Dallas, TX where the show is produced.

McKelway was invited on to the Huckabee show to discuss the new gig on Centerpoint, and his long career as a journalist. Doug and Mike had been colleagues when both worked at Fox, and as Huckabee is a musician himself, he was aware of Doug’s secret and special talent as a banjo picker. So they contacted Steve Huber with Huber Banjos, whose shop is located in Hendersonville, TN quite near the studio which produces the Huckabee show, and he brought a banjo over for Doug to play.

Steve and Doug have been friends for years as well, and he came to the taping with a brand new Truetone VRB-G model banjo, Huber’s replica of the vintage, prewar Granada.

You can watch the segment below. The first part of the video finds Huckabee and McKelway talking shop, discussing Doug’s family’s historic relationship with journalism and the DC region, and closes with a performance of Groundspeed with the show’s staff band. Doug does a fine job not only with the original Earl Scruggs version of the tune, but also Scott Vestal’s re-arrangement which has troubled banjo players for years.

Have a look…

Centerpoint will air beginning Monday, March 28, at 7:30 p.m. (EDT) each weekday evening on TBN, available on most cable and satellite packages, or live online from the TBN web site.

Huber builds professional and collectors grade five string banjos based on the design of the classic instruments made in the US prior to WWII, and used on recordings by the foundational players of bluegrass music. You can see and hear more about them by visiting the Huber Banjos web site 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.