Time has little meaning in the summer. That would be by way of explanation why I haven't posted in something like two weeks.

A sizable chunk of my absence from Nunal was due to the Mt. Airy Fiddler's convention, which is one of my favorite experiences of the year. Partly because I was gone at it--and partly because of a longish recovery curve upon returning back...

Though not the largest old time convention in the South, it surely is one of the best. Mt. Airy stands at the core of Surry County, which is the heart of a still-living tradition of old time music making that is unequaled anywhere else. (Notable enough that a friend of mine is writing a dissertation about it). It doesn't hurt that pioneer old time fiddler Benton Flippen is still around, and that Mt. Airy has the WPAQ radio station (Voice of the Blue Ridge) maintaining the flame.

At the fiddlers convention there is, of course, music day and night. I generally played until 4:30 or so each morning, and then went to sleep to bands playing well past dawn. Mt. Airy draws both old time and bluegrass musicians from all over (though this year I thought there was marginally more old time music). So, if you like the real, traditional bluegrass that has been snuffed out in so many other places, this would be the place to hear it.

There are contests in all instruments at Mt. Airy, but what I like is getting the chance to go play. The people I most enjoy playing music with I generally only see at fiddlers conventions in the summer. Nice to live to another season to have the opportunity.


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