The Bela Fleck and Abigail Washburn Interview



The hot banjo pickin that came before my guest. Country style picking by the likes of Bill Emerson and his Virginia Mountaineers whose fingers were on fire playing rainbow blues.

This music was cut in the moment, no multiple takes just burn and prey -it was and always will be that leap into the world of improvisation that led to my guest today who is another link in that chain.

A chain that consists Merle Watson who along with Doc toured this country with reckless abandon playing beer taverns and church picnics and the Telluride Bluegrass festival singing about the days of wine and roses with a Return to Forever and ever and Ever.

My guest has pierced through the modern labeling of music by continually putti g himself in unique musical settings- knowing that he might flub a few notes but create the highest creative art form which is "continual spontaneity" be with Dave Mathews or Zakir Hussain or Tony Trischka. Night in and Night out playing multiple chorus' like the fiddler Scottie Stoneman who ignored the 12 bars because he had something to say.

It's like Big Ben Banjo mastered by Rudy Van Gelder or Paul Whiteman or Eddie Peabody. How are you going to tell your story? How does your storytelling separate you from the 5 million of banjo Pickers out there.

My guest has many chapters and many stories in his career. Up till now he has played with everyone from Stanley Clarke to Jerry Garcia from Hobo Jim to his Flecktones. He has sought out new musical opportunities because music is the universal language- a cosmic exercise measuring the tenacity and spirit of both man and his maker.

BelaFleck welcome to the JFS



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