This year’s Texas Swing Festival, scheduled for Saturday, May 28, in the East Texas town of Athens, will feature five bands that personify Texas Swing as it honors multiple award-winning fiddler Johnny Gimble, regarded by millions as “the best American fiddle player, period.”
Music starts at noon Saturday, May 28, in the Cain Center, 915 S. Palestine St. in Athens, with the Marshall Ford Band. It ends with the Marshall Ford Band featuring “a case of the Gimbles,” meaning with Johnny Gimble, his son Dick on bass, and his granddaughter, Emily, on piano and vocals (both of who are Marshall Ford members).
The complete schedule:
Noon-1:15 p.m. — Marshall Ford Swing Band featuring Danny Levin
1:15-2 p.m. — CD signing and workshop/seminar
2-3:15 p.m. — Lost and Nameless Orchestra
3:15-4 p.m. — CD signing and workshop/seminar
4-5:15 p.m. — Warren Hood and the Goods
5:15-6 p.m. — CD signing and wokshop/seminar
6-7:15 p.m. — Slim Richey and The Jitterbug Vipers with special guest Ruby Jane
7-8 p.m. — CD signing and workshop/seminar
8-10 p.m. (into the night) — Johnny Gimble
’s A Case of the Gimbles featuring Marshall Ford Swing Band players (Emily and Dick)
The first Texas Swing Festival, held in 2010, was an outgrowth of the Old Fiddler’s Reunion in Athens, which Johnny Gimble attended many times. This year’s Texas Swing Festival features veteran and up-and-coming acts that are expressing themselves, like Gimble (now in his mid-80s), in the genre that mixes country and jazz.
JOHNNY GIMBLE: CELEBRATING WITH FRIENDS (2010, CMH Records) is the legend’s latest album. He’s carved out a great career, including playing five-string fiddle and electric mandolin for Bob Wills’ Texas Playboys; leading the house band at Wills’ club in Dallas and on “The Big D Jamboree”; moving to Nashville for 10 years and doing studio work with Merle Haggard, Chet Atkins, Porter Waggoner & Dolly Parton, Conway Twitty & Loretta Lynn, Joan Baez, Paul McCartney, George Strait and Jimmy Buffett; playing roles in the movies “Nashville,” “Honeysuckle Rose” and Clint Eastwood’s “Honkytonk Man,” which featured Gimble’s country hit “One Fiddle, Two Fiddle”; performing on Garrison Keillor’s “Prairie Home Companion” and on “Austin City Limits”; and recording more than 10 albums. For fiddlers around the world, there’s no escaping Gimble’s influence.
For more Festival information, visit (new Web site) www.athenstexasswingfestival.com.
Posted by: Sam Moore