Roots of the Red Clay Ramblers

Pictures from the 1970s

Fuzzy Mountain String Band 1972
(left to right) Blanton Owen, Jean (friend), Bill Hicks, Tom Carter, Vickie Owen, Malcolm Owen, Sheila (friend), Sharon Sandomirsky, (front) Eric Olson.  The music rubbed off on the children in the group.  Swinging is Caleb Southern, Chapel Hill independent record producer and engineer, and proprietor of the famed Kraptone Label.  Banjo picker Jake Owen is in his mom's lap.  Jake performed with the Fuzzy Mountain String Band at their 1995 MerleFest CD release reunion.  (Photo by Russell Rigsbee)
At the Festivals
Glenville, 1970 (click the pics for larger ones)

Armin Barnett watches a jam including Glen Smith and John Morris on fiddles, Blanton Owen on banjo.
(Photo by Bill Hicks)

Bobbie Thompson with Miles Krassen and
Frank George - bowhand in foreground
(Photo by Trina Milefsky) 

Dave Milefsky, Lee Hammons, unknown, Burl Hammons, Jack Brooks (?), Ira Mullins

Lee Triplett, Ira Mullins, Doc White, unknown, Miles Krassen (Photos by Bill HIcks)
Galax, 1973
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 <---Bill Hicks

Eric Olson (on left) at Galax--->
(click the pics for larger ones)
Union Grove, 1971

In 2014, the two pictures above from an unknown photographer were posted to Facebook.  Bill Hicks wrote this on his blog on 3/9/14: "Someone sent me the following uncredited pictures, which they'd found on a facebook page which focused on photos from many of the Union Grove Fiddler's Conventions. The man playing is the great, even legendary you might say, fiddler Tommy Jarrell. The year is probably 1970, give or take a year either way. The young man studying Mr. Jarrell's left hand with some intensity is... me! And what you are observing, and indeed what I'm observing in this photo, is pretty close to the moment when Mr. Jarrell's incredible playing captured me, the very match which is in this moment lighting one of the fuses of my subsequent life. How bout that!"

Bobbie tunes up for a session with Dave Milefsky, Richard Blaustein, and Dick Zaffron, while Malcolm sips breakfast--the big tent in the background.  Bill wrote an article about Union Grove in 1970, when he first joined the Fuzzy Mountain String band.  (Photo by Bill Hicks) (click pics for a larger view)


Old-Time Celeb
Tommy Jarrell at Union Grove, 1971 (Photo by Bill Hicks)
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Tommy Jarrell, his son Benny Jarrell, and Bill - on guitar for a change! (Photo by Anne Mennick)
(click the pic for a larger one)
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Burl Hammons
Sherman Hammons
Bill Hicks found both of these pictures; either he took them, or Dwight Diller did and gave him copies--he can't recall. (click the pics for  larger ones)

Bill Hicks, Robert Nowell Creadick, and Rosie Redding--the famed Smokey Grass String Band practices for their only fiddlers convention appearence of 1969--Dublin Va., 5th Place
(click the pic for a larger one)
Fuzzy Mountain Posters
fmsb_flyer.jpg (26293 bytes)Click on the posters for larger versions. fuzzymtnboys.jpg (47337 bytes)
And one more Fuzzy Mountain picture
fmsb.jpg (163533 bytes)Another Russell Rigsbee shot of the Fuzzy Mountain String Band.  This one appeared on the back cover of the second Fuzzy LP, Summer Oaks and Porch. (left to right: Blanton Owen, Tom Carter, Bill Hicks, Eric Olson, Malsolm Owen, Sharon Poss, Vickie Owen). 

Jesse Thompson Eustice contributed this picture and the pictures above of Eric Olson, Bill and the Jarrells, and the Smokey Grass String Band from her mother Bobbie Thompson's collection. (click the pic for a larger one)

Fuzzy Mountain Collection List
Fuzzy Mountain Music
Union Grove Fiddlers Convention 1970 by Bill Hicks
1995 Fuzzy Mountain Pics
Back to FMSB Home Red Clay Ramblers 1972-1981
June 24, 1999
updated March 9, 2014