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Obituary

Appalachian Musician and Bluegrass Radio Host Otis Head, 94 Dies

Otis HeadHarmonica stylist and 60-year radio host Otis Head, age 94, of the Plainview Community, died Tuesday, April 8, 2014 at Heritage Health Care in Fort Oglethorpe, Ga. He was born near Prater’s Mill, North of Varnell, Ga. at Gobbler’s Knob. Head was also a prizefighter, Western and Appalachian music promoter and performer and record producer. He began his performance career competing on a talent show in “Doc” Chamberlain’s Medicine Show hosted by country legend Rambin’ Tommy Scott in the late 1930’s.

Bluegrass Innovator and Pioneer George Shuffler has Died

George Shuffler Bluegrass Hall of Fame Recipient, George Shuffler passed away yesterday, April 7th, just shy of his 89th birthday. Shuffler was born in Valdese, North Carolina on April 15, 1925. Affectionately known as "The Third Stanley Brother" performed on many of bluegrass music's most historic recordings. George toured 20 years with the Stanley Brothers where he developed his unique cross picking guitar style that has been a big influence to many musicians. He was inducted into the International Bluegrass Music Association’s Hall of Fame in 2011 and was a recipient of the North Carolina Heritage Award in 2007. In 2011, Shuffler was inducted into the International Bluegrass Music Association's Hall of Fame along with Del McCoury. George Shuffler’s influences in bluegrass are as an innovative bass player, guitar stylist and featured vocalist and humorist, primarily as a sideman in some of the most important bands in the music’s history.

Where Have All the Flowers Gone? Pete Seeger Passes at 94

Pete Seeger, Photo by Anthony PepitoneOne of America's strongest folk heroes, Pete Seeger, passed away at New York Presbyterian Hospital while in his sleep last night at age 94. The often controversial activist, songwriter and performer shared his vision and professed his ideas of social change through the many folk songs and performances through decades of his life.

More on the Passing of Doug Davidson

Doug DavidsonMatt Scarbrough with Laurel River Line graciously took time from his busy schedule and dealing with the loss of Doug Davidson to tell us a bit more about Doug Davidson. We announced Wednesday that Laurel River Line's Dobro Player, Doug Davidson, had died Doug fell sick in June of this year and just never really got over it. We was hoping that it was just a virus or something but as months went on we knew that it was something more. Doug was in and out of the hospital the past couple of months and up until 3 weeks ago was when they finally figured out what it was. We got the word that it was Pancreatic Cancer.

Laurel River Line's Dobro Player, Doug Davidson, Passes

Doug DavidsonJoey Jones of Rock House Entertainment has informed us that Doug Davidson, the dobro player for bluegrass group Laurel River Line, passed away October 21. Doug joined the band about 8 months ago. Doug was born June 7, 1968. Visitation will take place at 11:00AM Friday, October 25, 2013 at Lakes Funeral Home, 1181 Main St. S, McKee,Kentucky 40447. The funeral will take place at 2 PM the same day with internment at Baldwin Family Cemetary in Gray Hawk, Kentucky.

Western Film, Country, Bluegrass Music Pioneer, Grand Ole Opry Star Dies

Tommy ScottToccoa, GA -- by Randall Franks
Ramblin’ “Doc” Tommy Scott, 96, entertainment business entrepreneur, singer, ventriloquist, actor, comedian and recreational vehicle innovator was laid to rest Oct. 4, 2013 in Toccoa, Ga. He died Monday, Sept. 30 of complications following injuries sustained in an automobile accident on Aug. 10.Tommy ScottTommy Scott

Toshi Seeger, Pete Seeger's Wife has Died at 91

Toshi SeegerToshi-Aline Ohta Seeger, folk singer Pete Seeger's wife of 70 years has died at the age of 91. She was always a close partner in his social and activist roles. She was always with him sharing in his life through every turn and passage.

Public Funeral Service Details for George Jones Announced

George Jones Nashville, Tenn. (May 1, 2013) – George Jones’ funeral will take place on Thursday, May 2nd at The Grand Ole Opry House in Nashville, Tennessee, starting at 10 am (Central) and will be open to the public. Doors will open at 9 am. "George would have wanted his fans and friends everywhere to be able to come and pay their respects along with his family," said publicist Kirt Webster. Country Music Hall of Famer, Grand Ole Opry member, and Kennedy Center Honoree George Glenn Jones died Friday, April 26, 2013 at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville.

George Jones May 2nd Funeral Service Open to Public

George Jones Nashville, TN -- George Jones’ funeral will take place on Thursday, May 2nd at The Grand Ole Opry House in Nashville, Tennessee, starting at 10 am and will be open to the public. "George would have wanted his fans and friends everywhere to be able to come and pay their respects along with his family," said publicist Kirt Webster. Country Music Hall of Famer, Grand Ole Opry member, and Kennedy Center Honoree George Glenn Jones died Friday, April 26, 2013 at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville.

Country Music Legend George Jones Dead at 81

George Jones Nashville, TN -- Country Music Hall of Famer, Grand Ole Opry member, and Kennedy Center Honoree George Glenn Jones died Friday, April 26, 2013 at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, Tennessee. He was hospitalized April 18 with fever and irregular blood pressure.

World Wide Bluegrass DJ Geoff Morris Died Yesterday

Geoff MorrisThe beloved DJ for World Wide Bluegrass passed away yesterday after losing his battle with cancer. The "Down Under" favorite DJ has provided hundreds of broadcasts as a volunteer for the WWB WorldWideBluegrass.com and was the webcaster's 2nd international DJ to sign on, after Terry Poirier. Geoff has visited what he lovingly called "Bluegrass America" and met many of his idols, the latest being Doc Watson, and he blogged about his travels and experiences at his website.

Bluegrass Artist Bob Schacht Passed Away

Bob SchachtRobert Marshall Schacht, 69, passed away in his home in Flagstaff on Sunday, December 30, 2012. Born September 18, 1943 in Racine, Wisconsin to Alice and Robert Schacht, Bob was the second of five children. In 1946 the family moved to Madison. They were a musical family, and Bob pursued his love of music throughout his life, singing tenor and playing stand-up bass in bluegrass bands and guitar in church groups.

Statement from NEA on the Passing of National Heritage Fellow Mike Auldridge

Mike AuldridgeFrom the National Endowment of the Arts: "It is with great sadness that the National Endowment for the Arts acknowledges the passing of 2012 NEA National Heritage Fellow and master Dobro musician Mike Auldridge. Over the course of his celebrated career, Auldridge innovated the use of the Dobro, influencing the development of contemporary bluegrass and country music and paving the way for other Dobro musicians such as Jerry Douglas and Rob Ickes. Auldridge performed as a member of such Maryland groups as the Seldom Scene and also as a solo artist. He recorded with musicians such as Emmylou Harris, Linda Ronstadt, Patty Loveless, Lyle Lovett, Doc Watson, Ricky Skaggs, Hank Williams, Jr., and Bill Monroe. During the 2012 NEA National Heritage Fellowships Concert in October 2012, Rob Ickes described the influence of Auldridge on the development of the Dobro: 'You can draw a line at Mike Auldridge. The Dobro is played with a metal bar, metal finger picks, and metal strings. There is a lot of room for noise. This guy figured out how to get rid of the noise and just leave the music.' We join many others in the bluegrass community and beyond in mourning the loss of Mike Auldridge while celebrating his life and enormous musical contributions."

Dobro Artist Mike Auldridge has Died

Mike AuldridgeMike Auldridge, the legendary dobro player who co-founded the Seldom Scene and later, Chesapeake, died yesterday morning after a long battle with cancer. He was 73. He had been under hospice care until his passing. His expressive talent on the resophonic guitar had no bounds as he played bluegrass, country and even jazz with style and elegance. He performed primarily around his Maryland home but certainly performed across the nation and the globe.

A Tribute to the Banjo Baron of Bluegrass, Walter Hensley 1936-2012

James Reams with Walter HensleyWalter Hensley, legengary bluegrass banjo player, passed away Sunday, November 25th.
By James Reams
Walt and I met in the early 1990s at a bluegrass festival in Groveton, NH. The festival was being held at a Speedway and at night, they would stop the music so the cars could race. I walked up to Vernon McIntyre's bus one evening looking for somebody to pick with and knocked on the door. When I walked in, there was Walter sitting there on the bus with Vernon, smoking a cigarette and looking for all the world just like a confederate soldier. When I asked him why he hadn't recorded in a number of years and he said "No one’s willin’ to work as hard as I’d like them to!" I told him that I'd have as many rehearsals as he felt necessary to get a project done and we recorded James Reams, Walter Hensley & The Barons of Bluegrass. When I found out that the album was nominated for IBMA's Bluegrass Recording Event of the Year in 2002, I called up Walter. He asked, "Who are the other nominees?" I told him "The Chieftans and The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band” and he responded, "Well, we might as well forget that one!"

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