Skip to main content


Review: Not Bad Illustration, Pretty Awesome Sticker

Thirty-seven years ago, before the pandemic, the September 2018 issue of The Old-Time Herald (Vol. 14, No. 10) featured an illustrated story about Dick Justice by Taylor W. Rushing. That led me to follow him and his illustration company Not Bad Illustration on Instagram. 

Rushing shares his various art projects, such as wood carvings and drawings, as well as items for sale, such as tote bags, T-shirts and stickers. As Rushing is also involved in the old-time music community, some of his art reflects this interest. He recently posted about a new fiddle-related sticker available through his online store
I couldn't resist. For $4, including shipping and handling, I quickly received this awesome "Old-Time Fiddling" sticker. This is a perfect case sticker. 

The quality is superb, as the sticker is thick and adheres well. If you're in the market for a new case sticker, I highly recommend Rushing's offerings. He has a number of other designs you might be interested, thou…
Recent posts

Steve Martin Banjo Prize Gets Wild and Crazy Announcing 5 Winners for 2020

This year has already been pretty extra, but the stakeholders behind the Steve Martin Banjo Prize just said, "Hold my beer." According to a No Depression article today, five banjo players have won the 2020 award.

You may recall that after the 2019 award was announced, there was some uncertainty as to whether the prize would continue. In August, which according to the calendar I have here was only two months ago, the non-profit FreshGrass Foundation signed on to continue awarding the prize into its second decade. 
In the past, there was only one winner per year, with a cash prize of $50,000. With FreshGrass taking the reins, the organization announced that the prize would an annual award of $25,000 to one or more banjo players across the stylistic spectrum including both five- and four-string banjo masters. 
"However, in light of the tremendous need in the musical community this year, the 2020 prize will be $50,000 split equally between five banjo players," according t…

2020 Third Quarter Report: On the Rebound

The last two months signaled a turnaround in progress and mood. After a rough second quarter, I hit rock bottom in July with playing music. I lost focus on my goals for the year and barely played fiddle at all. I played the bare minimum to keep my daily streak going and that's about it. 
However, at the end of July, I decided to look into an online fiddle course to see if that might reignite my enthusiasm. Lo and behold my playing time skyrocketed over August and September to help me get back on track. Although I may not be able to catch up to my fiddle playing time goal for 2020, I'm right on target for my banjo playing time goal that I set back in January. Embarking on this online fiddle course means that I've changed what tunes I'm learning this year. Sometimes plans change. I mean, no one planned on a global pandemic this year, did they? Another bright spot this quarter was actually getting to play music with others. I attended a socially distanced jam, replete with…

Field Recorders' Collective Releases New Albums for 2020

Earlier this year, the Field Recorders' Collective released a new album by Teodar Jackson, an old-time fiddler from Texas who was recorded in the mid-1960s. Yesterday, the FRC announced four more albums to round out their 2020 offerings. The Field Recorders' Collective is a non-profit organization established by the late Ray Alden that is dedicated to preserving and distributing non-commercial recordings of American traditional music that would be otherwise unavailable to the general public. Each year, the FRC releases a handful of a albums from a variety of musicians that are available on CD or as a digital download via Bandcamp. Not only does the group provide excellent music, but it's a cause well worth supporting. This year's releases represent musicians from Texas, Missouri, Mississippi, Kentucky and Ohio, including a reissue of a long out of print Rounder recording. The following is a quick summary of the 2020 FRC albums. For now, only the the Teodar Jackson albu…

Pandemic Daze? Find Something New. Stay Sane. Escape the Loop.

It's been five months. That was when my son's school decided to transition to online learning for the remainder of the school year. That was when I started working from home full time. That was when the quarantine began.  I'm not telling you anything new. The COVID-19 pandemic has changed everything for everyone. Wearing masks, social distancing, staying home. Every day feels the same, like we're stuck in the movie Groundhog Day. Wake up. Find my son on the couch watching videos. Log in for work. Make coffee. Answer emails. Sit in on video conference calls. Complete tasks. Log out. Endure. Wash. Rinse. Repeat. My wife is unable to work from home. After being furloughed for about a month, she has returned to work. She wears a mask all day, but she also gets to interact with people face to face. I never thought I'd be jealous of being able to socialize at work. I never truly knew the meaning of "ennui" until now. In fact, I didn't even know how to pronou…