Monday, 10 August 2009

A Brief Tribute to Mike Seeger

Earlier today I wrote a post on the BBC Music Blog about the New Lost City Ramblers' banjo ace Mike Seeger, who sadly died on Friday evening at his home in Lexington, Virginia. There's a great outtake clip from the BBC's Folk America doc there which I'd urge you to look at.

I discovered Mike Seeger via Bob Dylan. Seeger was a wonderful contributor to No Direction Home and Bob writes fondly of him in Chronicles Volume 1.

Back in January I posted a New Lost City Ramblers track on my Arkansas 'state songs' entry. Here are two more of their songs about a couple of my favourite subjects.

MP3: The New Lost City Ramblers - Crow Black Chicken

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MP3: The New Lost City Ramblers - Franklin D Roosevelt's Back Again

Buy: Amazon

I've also created a 10-track Spotify playlist of some cracking New Lost City Ramblers tunes in tribute.

One gets the impression that Mike Seeger was the sort of man about whom no one had a bad word to say. He also opened countless pairs of ears to the wonderful sound of America's past. I'm in no doubt that he will be missed by many.

Related Posts
State Songs #4: Arkansas - includes the New Lost City Rambler's track Arkansas Sheik

Related Links
BBC Music Blog: Mike Seeger RIP - my other post, with excellent video clip
Spotify Playlist: The New Lost City Ramblers


Don Talley said...

Mike was truly a unique American who lived a full life. I'm thankful for the times I heard him play but also for getting a chance to talk with him on more than one occaision. Mike always impressed me with his genuiness and openess to share the music he loved with others. He was truly a gentleman and friend to all who know him.

Smithsonian said...

For an appreciation of Mike Seeger (1933-2009), a tireless preserver, performer, and teacher of traditional music, please visit

To share your thoughts, memories, and stories, please visit the Smithsonian Folkways Facebook page: or email SmithsonianFolkways@SI.EDU

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