Hooked on Bluegrass

Mark Varner

I was raised in a house full of country music, mostly the pop stuff like Slim Whitman, but also Hank Williams and George Jones and the honky tonkers. I always loved that sound.

Back in the late sixties I really enjoyed seeing John Hartford and Glen Campbell on television. In fact my musical career started with a sixth grade talent show, accompanying myself on "Wichita Lineman" on my Silvertone guitar. (I won second place.) In the early seventies I was living in San Jose and was able to listen to KFAT radio and got turned on to lots of great artists. They played the "Will the Circle Be Unbroken" album, Old and in the Way, Doc Watson, and the Cache Valley Drifters. This reinforced my love for country music and gave me a peek into the bluegrass world.

Bluegrass to me has always been country music with more heart and depth; country music in overdrive, like they say. I started attending festivals in the early nineties and that's all it took. I'll always be grateful to the DJs, bluegrass organizations, and festival promoters for providing a great, solid foundation for my life and that of my family. My kids have grown up with the CBA. Summertime means festivals and we all just love the events and the people. I'm lucky and grateful.

(posted 4/9/2006)

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