WaPo goes all Mike Auldridge on us

Today’s (1/30) edition of The Washington Post has a lengthy special feature on DC native and bluegrass reso-legend Mike Auldridge.

The article By Bill Friskics-Warren chronicles Mike’s discovery of the instrument, and his storied career in bluegrass music through the eyes of such luminaries as Eddie Stubbs and Jerry Douglas.

“Mike changed everything,” said Jerry Douglas, for years a mainstay of Krauss’s Grammy-winning band, Union Station. “He phrased differently. He was the first guy to use the Dobro in a more modern way, to phrase it more like a saxophone or some other instrument.

“Mike isn’t a fast, rolling Dobro player, and because of that he created this other way,” added Douglas, who early in his career emulated Auldridge’s playing and approach. “He was able to play more modern material and that freed me. It unchained me from traditional bluegrass music. It was a revelation, and Mike was the guy who made it happen.”

Of course Mike also chimes in, in this case on why he never made the move to Music City when country rock and pop had a resurgence in the 19702…

“Looking back, I’ve often wondered and even wished I’d gone to Nashville,” said Auldridge, who will perform Wednesday, as part of the Institute of Musical Traditions concert series, with singer-songwriters Eric Brace and Peter Cooper at the Takoma Park Community Center.

“My wife and I seriously considered it, but who knows?” he added with a chuckle. “Had we moved to Nashville I might have wound up playing steel guitar in a band and dying in a plane crash.”

You can read the complete article on the WaPo web site.

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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.