Saturday, August 08, 2009

Mike Seeger (1933- 2009)

i don't claim that Mike Seeger was a Universalist - I dont have a clue as to his religious views. Although I do know that his half brother is an Unitarian Universalist. But his career in music did touch one of the joys of the south - the True Vine music of the pre-war south. Seeger was the most popular and I believe the original revialist of the old time music tradition. He recorded with and re-discovered dozens of old-time musicians. He named bluegrass music.
The rural folks of the south loved old time country music - as did the Universalists of the south. And frankly, one of the appeals of Universalists was that it wasn't a sin to play the fiddle. The Baptist said you would go to hell if you danced, the Universalists would let the dance be right there, fiddles and banjo going. As I read about southern Universalists, I sometimes hear about fiddles - one of the Rev Strains won a fiddle contest! About Clayton McMichen, who's granddaddy helped him learn to play (McMichen grew up in an Universalist household).
i knew bluegrass, but in 1972, with Seeger's Second Annual Farewell Reunion LP, I begin to know old time. From that I discovered that my opera loving father was able to ID Uncle Dave Macon by his voice.
I picked this song, because stuff like this confuses folks - its corny. yep, it sure is, ain't that nice?
RIP Mike, thanks for helping me rediscover my own roots.

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