In late July, I wrote a "fake news" item about Barack Obama trying to appeal to fans of Oldtime music.
Well ... now Barack Obama really is, in fact, trying to appeal to fans of Oldtime music (my consulting fee is in the mail, I'm quite certain).
To wit, Ralph Stanley endorsement to run in southwestern Virginia.best known as the elderly "Oh Death" guy on the O Brother Where Art Thou soundtrack has recorded a radio
The area is hotly contested in the presidential race, and was also the home of many pioneers of the style today called "Oldtime"Tommy Jarrell, Henry Whitter, The Carter Family, The Stonemans, and many, many, more.
I wrote that dorky fake news item because I kept doing double-takes at photos of Obama at a meeting of NCLR, which looks a hell of a lot like NLCR, which to Oldtime fans is as immediately recognizable as NASA or FBI. After a little slap-dash Photoshop work (above), I was in business.
Several years ago, I drove to Moorehead, Minnesota, and stayed at a Red Roof Inn just to see my first concert by Mike Seeger, cofounder of the NLCR. At the end of the concert, Mike said he was going to go sit at the CD table and press the flesh.
He'd just been touring with Ralph Stanley, you see, who stays at the CD table until the last dog diesand Seeger saw that Stanley sells a lot of CDs that way. After about 50 years in show business, Mike was apparently still learning from old Ralph Stanley.