Art Works Blog

Ruined for Life by Bluegrass

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The Del McCoury Band. Photo courtesy of the Grand Ole Opry

Del McCoury is that rare musician who can appear traditional and innovative at the same time. He?s played with bluegrass founder Bill Monroe and the rock band Phish. He?s recorded traditional songs as well as ones written by contemporary artists Richard Thompson and Steve Earle. He?s played the Grand Ole Opry and the Bonnaroo music and arts festival.

The bluegrass legend (and 2010 NEA National Heritage Fellow) is our feature in this week?s Art Works podcast, discussing his 50-year career. In this excerpt, McCoury tells how he first became enthralled with bluegrass music in the 1950s when hearing Earl Scruggs play??He just about ruined me for life.? [:37]

[audio:http://artworks.arts.gov/wp-content/uploads/McCoury-blog.mp3]

[transcript]

Hear the entire podcast if for no other reason than to hear the best pronunciation of ?Baltimore? ever. And don?t forget to check back at arts.gov on September 24 to see McCoury perform at the NEA National Heritage Fellowships awards concert, which is being webcast live for the first time.

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