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The Merry Month of May (and June)

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Burlington, NC, June 2, 2011 -- It's hard to complain about going to five old-time jams in two states in one month and the Mount Airy Old-Time Fiddlers Convention the next.

In Dallas, where I live, we now have old time jams on the first and third Sundays of every month 2:00-4:30 p.m. in the print shop at Dallas Heritage Village, a city-owned historical park.  (Ya'll come.) That's thanks to Dean Barber (BHO -- FretlessinTexas)  who moved to Texas from Alabama, stirred things up and got it organized.  It's been a great success.  That accounts for two of my May jams.

The North Texas Traditional Dance Society holds two jams most months, now, too.  A fast jam for fiddle tunes (1st Sunday, 1-3 p.m.) and a slow jam for Irish tunes (2nd Sunday, 1-3 p.m.). Contact Sheila Bellows for details (  I've been to several of the fast jams, but didn't make it in May.

I'm visiting my Dad in Burlington, NC.  I've been to three jams with my Durham/Chapel Hill/Raleigh/Greensboro/etc.   friends (including BHOer oldwoodchuckb) in Durham and Saxapahaw. The Saxapahaw jam was held in the Haw Rievr Ball Room, an old textile dying plant which has been converted into a performance venue/ballroom. We're hoping it will become a regular calendar entry.

But wait, there's more.  Coming up is a one-day trip (June 4) to the Mount Airy Old-Time Fiddlers Convention. (Only one day because of my bad planning.) And, there are tentative plans for another old-timejam at the Haw River Ball Room on June 5. (probably 7 p.m. if it happens). 

Ain't music fun?

Dan Gibson, Storyteller/Banjoplayer

Dallas, TX; Burlington, NC



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Playing Since: 1986
Experience Level: Purty Good

[Jamming] [Socializing] [Helping]

Occupation: Professional Storyteller

Gender: Male
Age: 76

My Instruments:
Chuck Lee 11" custom -- walnut neck and rim, integral tone ring, Pegheds tuners, dogwood star inlay in headstock (new in 9/2008). 1980 Wildwood Troubadour, bought used in 1988. (In banjo terminology, does it's age make it pre-war?) Mountain style fretless made by Clifford Glenn of Sugar Grove, NC, bought in 1995. Bob Thornburg gourd banjo (#159), bought used from Chuck Lee, March, 2010. Thornburg tackhead grain measure banjo (#156), bought used from Chuck Lee, April 2010. Prust 13" trensioning banjo (new in January 2011). Terry Bell Boucher (mid-1840s style) replica kit: 28.5" scale, 13" rim, gut strings, fretless -- very pre-war. Pete Ross "Liberty" gourd banjo: four gut strings (3 long, one short), fretless, modeled after banjo in the 1792 painting "Liberty Displaying the Arts and Sciences." Late 1890s Washburn presentation 5- string.

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Favorite performer of all time: Victor Borge

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Created 3/13/2006
Last Visit 7/15/2018

I am a professional storyteller who uses old time and stroke style banjo in my programs at schools, libraries, civic events, storytelling festivals, music festivals, other festivals, private parties, museums, seniors' groups, Scout groups, barn raisings, mortgage burnings, shivarees, financial bailouts, etc. I live in Dallas,Texas, but make two or more trips a year to Burlington, NC, to visit my dad and often do some storytelling and banjo playing gigs, and jamming. I heard old time banjo for the first time at the Ozark Folk Center in Mountainview, AR, 1986. Decided I HAD to learn how to do that. Bought a Framus at a pawn shop in the Dallas area, read books, listened to recordings, and practiced late at night with a towel stuffed in the banjo and the television sound turned down to make the bum-ditty second nature. It got out of hand from there. Currently working on stroke style.

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