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Clark Kessinger

One of the greatest of old-time fiddlers, Clark Kessinger and his nephew, Luches, were billed as the Kessinger Brothers and recorded for the Brunswick company in the late '20s, producing records that greatly influenced other fiddle players around the South. After Luches' death in 1944, Clark appeared only at local dances around Charleston, West Virginia, until he was "rediscovered" during the folk revival of the 1960s. Astonishingly, Kessinger was still near the peak of his powers and suddenly found himself in demand at folk festivals, and ended up recording a handful of LPs and appearing on The Grand Ole Opry, where he gave two encores because of audience demand. He also entered many of the better-known fiddle contests, winning first place and the title of World Champion Fiddler at the 47th annual Old-Time Fiddler's & Bluegrass Festival in Union Grove, North Carolina in April 1971. Kessinger suffered a stroke later that year, nine years after his comeback, while active in both live appearances and recording for Rounder Records. He was never able to play again, and passed away from an additional stroke in 1975 at the age of 78. ~ David Vinopal & Bruce Eder
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Clark Kessinger, Fiddler - Old-Time Country Music

1. Ragtime Annie

2. Sally Ann Johnson

3. Red Bird (1966)

4. Salt River

5. Over The Waves Waltz

6. Poca River Blues

7. Chinky Pin

8. Flop-Eared Mule

9. Cluck Old Hen

10. Turkey Knob

11. Leather Britches

12. Billy In The Lowground

13. Dance All Night With A Dram In Your Hand

14. Wednesday Night Waltz (1966)

15. Sandy River

16. Hell Among The Yearlings

17. Sally Goodin'

18. Richmond Polka

x

Track List: Clark Kessinger Live At Union Grove

1. Trombone Rag (Live)

2. Dill Pickle Rag (Live)

3. Rose Of My Heart Waltz (Live)

4. Round Town Gal (Live)

5. Whistlin' Rufus (Live)

6. Sally Goodin' (Live)

7. Durang's Hornpipe (Live)

8. Arkansas Traveler (Live)

9. Old Joe Clark (Live)

10. Down Yonder (Live)

11. Turkey In The Straw (Live)

12. Golden Slippers (Live)

13. Billy In The Lowground (Live)

14. Poca River Blues (Live)

Comments

Report as inappropriate
I hadn't heard Mr. Kessinger's music in probably 20 years but, like an old favored tool or article of clothing, his fiddling just strikes a chord in my soul. Thank The Infinite for players of Mr. Kessinger's ken, and for my ability to hear and appreciate them for it.
Report as inappropriate
Great fiddler. Has he ever recorded a tune that wasn't at breakneck speed? His rhythm guitarist ain't no slouch either.
Report as inappropriate
hinkman.geo
Greatest fiddler of all time in my humble opinion.

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