Seldom Scene to recreate Live at the Cellar Door on stage in Virginia

This is exciting news for Seldom Scene fans in eastern Virginia, and for any willing to travel there to witness this one time only event.

Mount Airy Farm near Warsaw, VA will host the Scene for a concert on September 25, during which they will perform a complete recreation of their classic 1975 album, Live at the Cellar Door. It was this recording that really put Seldom Scene on the map to a wider audience, not only for their brilliant music, but also for the stage antics that won them such a loyal following in the DC region starting in the early ’70s.

The 2-LP set was broadly hailed by critics, outside as well as within bluegrass circles, and was re-released by Rebel Records in 2019 as a CD box set with a 12-page booklet and several unpublished photographs. The original introduced thousands of new fans to the music of John Starling, John Duffey, Ben Eldridge, Mike Auldridge, and Tom Gray, and is viewed as one of the most important of the 20th century in this field.

The fact that none of the original members who cut that record are still in the group should be only a minor setback for die-hard fans, as only two are still living, and only one still active in music.

Current guitarist Dudley Connell says that the guys are looking forward to the challenge of performing all 22 songs, in order, on stage.

“We love playing music for our friends in the Northern Neck. It should be an enjoyable evening as we do our best to perform, for the first and only time, the entire Cellar Door album from start to finish. This was an important album for the original Seldom Scene, and introduced bluegrass to a new community of listeners.” 

With Dudley, other current members include Lou Reid on mandolin, Fred Travers on reso-guitar, Ronnie Simpkins on bass, and Ron Stewart on banjo, talented bluegrass veterans one and all.

The stage at Mount Airy Farm is set in a grassed depression, where people can spread out and enjoy the music. Organizers expect that viral restrictions will be substantially eased by September, but plan to follow whatever guidelines may be in place to ensure a safe environment for everyone.

Tickets for the September 25 concert can be purchased now online. They aren’t expected to last long.

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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.