Harry Clark – 2nd luckiest mandolinist alive?

Harry Clark with the pack of cigarettes left behind by the their who stole his carIf it wasn’t for Caleb Lindsey taking a chain saw to the face on Saturday and coming through it with just a scar, we might be talking about Volume Five’s Harry Clark as the world’s luckiest mandolinist.

Imagine returning to your car after an evening with friends, only to discover that it is gone, along with your cherished personal instrument. The immediate sense of loss and violation would surely be profound, followed quickly by the realization that your life – and your touring career – would have to go on despite the loss.

But like Caleb and his extraordinary good fortune, Harry was reunited with his car and his mandolin in short order. And with a bonus left behind by the culprit – a pack of Newports, a pair of sunglasses, and a crack pipe.

Here is Harry’s run down of events…

Harry Clark with Volume Five at the New Year's Bluegrass Festival 2016 - photo by Donn Duncan, Sr.“It started out Saturday night at a backyard get together at a friend’s house in a suburban neighborhood.

My friends and I remember hearing a car door open and close, and an engine start, followed by a car driving off around 11:00 p.m. We thought nothing of it, assuming it was one of the many surrounding neighbors.

When it came time to head home around 1:15 a.m., we walked through my buddy’s garage and as the garage door opened, I was taken aback to realize my car wasn’t where I had left it. I said, ‘I could have sworn I parked my car here.’

After a quick look around the outside of the house, we came to the conclusion that my car had in fact been stolen. Inside the car was my barely 1 year old Bernabe mandolin (of which I have become quite fond). We decided to notify the authorities and my parents. Not long after, a police officer was dispatched to the house and a full report was given.

When my dad picked me up a half hour later, he relayed to me Caleb Lindsey’s unfortunate chainsaw mishap that had happened earlier that day. We both agreed that it just wasn’t a good day to be a mandolin player.

After a long night and a disappointing morning, I got a call from the White County Police Office saying that Little Rock Police had recovered my car in south Little Rock (75 miles away) and everything, including the mandolin, was still in it.

Upon arriving to where my car had been recovered, the police officer who was waiting told me that it was stolen by a man who used it for nothing other than joy riding and smoking crack. This sort of gave me mixed emotions, but the sheer relief and happiness of having my belongings back outweighed those feeling by far.

I never would have imagined this happening and I must admit I was a little bit devastated. The support and positivity shown to me by my friends and family in the music community was very reassuring. Once again, I’m reminded how much the bluegrass community cares for and looks after its own.

I’ve learned a valuable lesson on taking extra steps to protect valuable possessions and I hope others learn from my mistake to take your axe inside and lock your car!

Sage advice, that.

Congratulations Harry!

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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.