My next major project is the Country song, Will the Circle Be Unbroken. For me, this song stood out in the Ken Burns eight-part miniseries about Country Music. A version of this music became an early Country Standard of The Carter Family. Then later in the miniseries the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band released the song with the collaboration of early Bluegrass, and Country-Western legends, including Maybelle Carter. Although, I recall The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band while in college, because of their 1970 recording of Mr Bojangles; they are not my earliest connection to country style music.
My earliest remembrance of songs of any kind where the 1958 release of Tom Dooley, by the Kingston Trio, and Michael, Row the Boat a Shore, released in 1960, by the Highway Men. Amazingly I have this faint memory of hearing these songs in a large brightly lit restaurant, with chrome chairs, and a high ceiling, on a jukebox in Ashland Wisconsin. Even earlier my attraction for Folk music began with the radio and the music of Hank Williams. That all changed in 1964 with the Beatles in American and watching them on the Ed Sullivan show. To this day I still have a lot of interest in Folk, and earlier Country music, that all started in the sixties.
Here is the video of a live performance of the Nitty Gritty Band, Will the Circle Be Unbroken:
One of my second life wishes, in which I defy the odds and not come back as a Chinese laborer but as a young weekend banjo player, would boost my skill as a musician, and give my Saturday nights out memories a sharper edge along with a better foot tap.
Scott Von Holzen