Monday, July 02, 2007

The Top 10 facts about Uncle Dave Macon

1. Uncle Dave Macon was a charter member and the first superstar of the Grand Ole Opry when it began airing on WSM radio in Nashville in 1925. He was one of the most colorful personalities in the history of music. Many banjo players consider him a major influence.

2. Uncle Dave, who was born in Warren County, was well over the age of 50 before he starting playing the banjo professionally. He continued to perform until he died in 1952 at the age of 81 in Readyville. He was inducted posthumously into the County Music Hall of Fame in 1966.

3. Uncle Dave was an extremely skilled banjo player. Music historians have identified at least 19 different picking styles on his records. Macon is considered a skilled songwriter, master showman and outrageous comedian. He blended the content of Highland folk songs with the musical stylings of the blues and the energy of vaudeville from Tin Pan Alley.

4. Macon was a master of musical sleight of hand and this showmanship was a staple of his performances. He would flip his banjo in the air in the midst of picking and a singing and catch it without a break in the music. With his banjo planted on the floor, Macon would strum the instrument with his Derby hat while walking around the banjo.

Read the rest of the list in the The Murfreesboro Post

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