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Banks of the Ohio

Bluegrass music is a symbol of the Appalachian region and its people. Rich with culture and tradition, bluegrass still thrives along the Ohio River in Athens' own backyard.

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(Junior Wiblin plays “Red Necks, White Socks, and Blue Ribbon Beer”)

Junior Wiblin (sings):

“…the cigarette smoke kind of hangs in the air; red necks and white socks and blue ribbon beer…”

Junior Wiblin:

But my dad always told me they ought to take a man out and shoot him to play a guitar. He did!

(Junior Wiblin plays “Foggy Mountain Top”)

Junior Wiblin (sings):

“If I was on some foggy mountain top, I’d sail away to the west, oh I’d sail around this whole wide world, with the girl I love the best.”

(Dave Ollie plays “Good Old Mountain Dew”)

Dave Ollie:

I call my bass harmonica “Big Baby.”

Dave Ollie:

Playing the harmonica reminds me of her a great deal.

(Larry and Vernal Vance play “Blue Bonnet Lane”)

Larry Vance (sings):

“In my memory there lingers, a dream that’s haunting me again, of a girl with eyes like flowers…”

Vernal Vance:

Probably 11 or 12 years old we started picking together, and we’ve been picking together ever since.

Larry Vance (sings):

“Oh the sweet and happy hours, in my heart they will always remain, like the sweet fragrance of the flowers…”

Vernal Vance:

You know how it is when you got a brother; I just enjoy spending time with him.

Doug Crabtree:

Bluegrass defines a way of life, it’s a truly American music, established in the Appalachian foothills and throughout the Appalachian plateau.

(Doug Crabtree plays “Wreck of the Old 97”)

Doug Crabtree (sings):

“…Now listen to me and learn, never speak harsh words…”

Doug Crabtree:

It belongs to us.

(Martha Whitlatch plays “Accordion Instrumental”)

Martha Whitlatch:

It brings back my mom and memories.

Martha Whitlatch:

My mother, my hero.

(Doug Crabtree picking on the banjo)

Doug Crabtree:

I think our relationship is much deeper than music; it’s just good. We just share a lot of joy playing.

(Doug Crabtree plays “Battle Hymn of the Republic”)

Martha Whitlatch:

And we both love kids.

(Dale Burns Band plays “Somehow Tonight”)

Dale Burns (sings):

“Now all I can see is darkness in the future, that's why I long to have you near; Somehow tonight I feel lonesome my darling, somehow tonight I feel blue, somehow tonight, these tears of mine keep falling, tonight sweetheart over you.”

Joe and Mary Christy sing “In the Garden”)

(singing):

“The dew is still on the roses, and the voice I hear calling on my ear…”

Joe Christy:

And then we decided we’d form our own band, me and ma did, and so we called it the Backporch Bluegrass Band.

(singing):

“Oh and he walks with me and he talks with me, and he tells me I am his own, and the joy we share, as we tarry there, none other has ever known.”

(Joe Christy plays “Blue Moon of Kentucky”)

Joe Christy:

Oh yeah, when you turn the bluegrass channel on no matter what she’s doing she’ll quit and get down there quick and run and grab that and start getting up here on the floor and start dancing and playing it.

Joe Christy (sings):

“Blue moon of Kentucky keep of shining, shine on the one that’s gone and left me blue…”

Krissy (sings):

ahhhhhhh….ahhh…..ahhhhhh

Joe Christy (sings):

“Oh Blue moon of Kentucky keep on shining, shine on…”

Joe Christy:

She’s gonna be a good little singer, I figure you’ll see her on stage.

(Megan Murphy plays “Panhandle Rag”)

Megan Murphy:

The people who know me know that bluegrass is basically the foundation of everything for me.

(Megan Murphy and Buddy Griffin play “Back Up and Push”)

Megan Murphy:

Kind of goes back to the history of it and the traditions the music itself, Appalachia, and all that. Just the people, there are still people like that and it’s definitely right here in the middle of it. It’s where we’re at.

(Junior Wiblin resumes playing “Red Necks, White Socks, and Blue Ribbon Beer”)

Junior Wiblin (sings):

“…Blue ribbon beer, with my red necks and white socks and blue ribbon beer.”

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Banks of the Ohio