The Late, Great Allen Shelton: a BAND PLAYER

Red Henry

Red Henry

Folks, this is Allen Shelton playing his tune "Bending the Strings". I'm sending it out so that you can all see it.

This is a great performance by a late, great picker. And I was reminded (having forgotten it since) that about 25 years ago I had the honor of backing Allen up on guitar when he played this tune at a workshop.

I'm also posting this because Allen Shelton was not only a great picker, but he KNEW HOW TO PLAY IN A GROUP. Examples:

1.When the fiddle is taking its break, is Allen playing away in the mike? NO. You can really hear the fiddle.

2. When the mandolin is taking its break, is Allen in the mike, drowning it out? NO. You can really hear the mandolin.

To be a good musician, you have to know more than just how to play your instrument. You have to know how to help the whole band sound good. Allen was not only a great musician, but also a great BAND PLAYER.


P.S. -- Mandolin content: In the clip, also listen to mandolin genius Jesse McReynolds. During his break he comes out with something
dangerously close to a Frank Wakefield lick, too. This is all Mighty Fine entertainment.

Posted in By Red, jamming, Video clips and tagged on by .

About Red Henry

Began playing mandolin, guitar, fiddle, and banjo in 1967-69. I married Murphy in 1974. We led the Red & Murphy bluegrass band, playing professionally, from 1975-87. Since then I've handled the technical side of Murphy Method cassette, videotape, and DVD production. When you call I usually answer the phone, and I'm normally the one who sends out the orders.

4 thoughts on “The Late, Great Allen Shelton: a BAND PLAYER

  1. Steve (in Japan)

    Red, thank you for the banjo lesson from the Peaceful Valley Bluegrass Festival of 1988. I hear your plea (or cry in the wilderness), and read between the lines about “What A Day Of Singing!”

  2. Steve (in Japan)

    Allen Shelton RIP: July 2, 1936 ~ November 21, 2009

    This Saturday morning (JST), Nov. 28th, the Saturday morning Bluegrass Hour on our local FM radio station is dedicatating their one hour program as a tribute to Allen Shelton and his banjo picking.

  3. Boyd Murphy

    Really enjoyed the clip. I have your advanced banjo video Volume 1.
    I am trying to find Allen Shelton playing “Whispering” .

    I think I heard him playing it somewhere.
    Thanks ,

Comments are closed.