Americana

Tomcat Courtney was raised in a cotton field outside of Marlin, Texas. When he was ten years old he saw Bill Bojangles dance in a traveling minstrel show and Tomcat was hooked.. He left home at the age of 14 to dance in the circus where he also sang and learned to play the guitar. His style of...
Lou Curtiss was a long time supporter of American folk music and in fact, he helped coin the phrase “roots music.” For over 30 years he created, arranged and promoted the annual folk music festival in San Diego beginning in 1967. Lou also hosted a jazz radio program as well as running his rare...
Billy Grammer formed his own guitar company after years of playing country music in and around Nashville. Billy recorded several hit records on his own as well as playing behind some of the biggest names in country music. In 1958 he recorded “Done Laid Around” and the chart topper “Gotta Travel On...
Hoot Hester was a regular on the Grand Ole Opry and the Nashville recording studios as one of country music’s top violin (or perhaps “fiddle” is most appropriate) players. Hoots passion for his instrument also led him to study the long history of country fiddlers, and their styles. Hoot was also a...
Sam Hinton was a national treasure. It seems appropriate to use that term when talking about him because he become an important and invaluable preservationist of some of our nation's greatest treasures, folk songs. Sam spent many years traveling the backwoods of this country in search of...
Deacon John Moore has been a noted studio musician in New Orleans for decades.  His performance and recordings have not only represented the New Orleans Sound over the years, he has helped define it! Deacon John was very active in the studios of New Orleans in the heyday of R&B and can be heard...
Jimmy Rivers was known in the world of Western Swing as an innovative guitarist who played a double neck and brought to life a hard driving style known as the Brisbane Bop.  Jimmy was a cowboy-type, playing hard and working even harder at his craft as a performer.  He was easy-going and low-key,...
Bob Smakula built his first dulcimer when he was 14 years old.  Having grown up all around the roots music of West Virginia, Bob loved all aspects of musical instruments.  Along with playing and building, he developed great skills at repairing all stringed instruments and took great joy in playing...