Wayne Miller passes

Wayne Miller, banjo picker from Asheboro, NC, died on October 21, 2021, after a brief bout with pancreatic cancer. He was 72.

Starting in the late 1970s, Miller played in a band called the Randolph Express (named after the North Carolina County). The group featured Miller on banjo, his younger brother, Glen, on bass, Gary Callicutt on mandolin, and Richard McNeill on guitar. The musical quartet played regularly for ten years, almost every Friday night.

Callicutt, his former band mate, shared, “He was one of the best friends that I ever had. We never had a cross word.”

Miller was a frequent bluegrass festival attendee who loved to camp and jam. 

Another musical crony, Teddy White, praised Miller. “Wayne was my best friend. We would go to bluegrass festivals together… camp together. He was a good musician, good singer, and one of the best people I ever met. He was kind and courteous and would do anything for you. If I needed him, I just had to call. I miss him every day.”

The banjoist was a regular at the Maness Music Barn’s Tuesday night jams. 

Proprietor, Clyde Maness, reflected on his relationship with Miller… “He was one of the finest people I ever met in my life. He was a good banjo picker. He loved to come here (Maness Music Barn) and jam. He was loyal. I loved to hear him play What A Friend We Have In Jesus. He would always dedicate that song to me when he played on stage.”

Miller is survived by his wife of 46 years, Teresa Auman Miller; son, Rodney Miller (Stacey); daughter, Amber Skeen (Chris); grandsons, Davis Miller and Wyatt Skeen; father, Gilbert Miller; and brother, Glenn Miller.

He will be sorely missed by all those in the central North Carolina bluegrass community.

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About the Author

Sandy Hatley

Sandy Chrisco Hatley is a free lance writer for several NC newspapers and Bluegrass Unlimited magazine. As a teenager, she picked banjo with an all girl band called the Happy Hollow String Band. Today, she plays dobro with her husband's band, the Hatley Family.