The Musician and Music Historian
This website has been constructed to give recognition to Jim Lloyd, “one of our own”, who has been dedicated to spreading the knowledge of Old Time Music. This original American Music was created in the mountains of Virginia, North Carolina and Kentucky. It is the foundation of our Bluegrass music and Bluegrass is the foundation of our American Country Music. We are so proud of our American Music Heritage that originated in these Appalachian Mountains.
The music is such a source of regional pride and Jim Lloyd is preserving the tunes and through his banjo museum, preserving the instruments that play it for our future generations. He is teaching our youth and demonstrating the music in many venues, festivals and music conventions. He is active in creating and driving these music venues to success. Some examples are the music performed at the Crooked Road venue of the BW Country Store (a program he mentored and helped establish), the Rural Retreat Fiddler’s Convention (he is mentoring and helping establish) and his own Black Friday Music Jam that he has held for over 10 years in his Rural Retreat Barber Shop. Jim has taught in the Augusta Program, Davis & Elkins College located in Elkins, West Virginia, the Swannanoa Gathering at Warren Wilson College, Asheville, NC and the John C. Campbell Folk School, Brasstown, NC. Jim has held music workshops at Virginia Tech, Appalachian State University, Wytheville Heritage Preservation Center, the Foaotmad Festival in England and in many other educational venues. Jim has performed all over the United States from the Galax fiddler’s Convention, Fiddlers Grove Festival in Union Grove, NC to Nice, France. He has performed at the Mardi Gras at Bangor, Maine, Mountain Stage for PBS, for the Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Association (MBOTMA), at the DuPont Grand Opera House, Wilmington, DE, the Carpenter Theater in Richmond VA and the Loyal Jones Appalachian Center, Berea College in Berea, KY just to name a few.
Most recently, Jim has become the Music Director for the Henderson School of Appalachian Arts in Marion, VA. The school was named for Jim’s long time friend Wayne Henderson who was honored with the NEA National Heritage Fellowship Award in 1995. Jim has been nominated for the award this year. Hope he gets selected.
Needless to say we are proud of our hometown musician and feel he is a local treasure that needs to be recognized as a National Treasure by the National Endowment For The Arts with the National Heritage Fellowship Award that he is being nominated for.
I suppose one good way to introduce you to Jim is to copy the liner notes from a “Special” CD he produced in 2002 called “One Night Only” where he asked some of his musician friends to play for the CD. And he has some great musician friends like John & Kathy Hollindsworth, Jim Costa, Darrell Cline, David Lawson, Will Keys, Herb Key, Tim and Sandy Litz, Diane Cregger, Wayne Henderson, Ron Cole, Gerald Anderson, Jay Loftus and Eddie Ogle.
Franklin Horton wrote:
Jim Lloyd and I go way back. We’ve been friends for going on thirty years and I’ve followed his musician career from playing “Here comes Little Red Riding Hood” and Marty Robbin’s “El Paso” in the halls of our high school for loose change, to the picking sessions with the old timers at the summer flea markets, and to Jim’s first “I was to get paid!” gig. I think that Jim was drawn to traditional music for many of the same reasons that people are drawn to other things that represents a piece of our past, such as books, antiques, or old cars. In this collection of songs, Jim Lloyd and his eclectic gathering of some of the legendary woodspirits of traditional music do, indeed, make the music their own. But like a good dancer, they always know where their feet are, and like family they always seem to find their way back home. In this manner, the music will remain vibrant and a piece of our lives instead of gathering dust on a museum shelf. If you’re afraid to make music of your own, then it’s already dead.
The liner notes continue with David Holt writing:
There are more musicians in Jim Lloyd’s family than ants at a 4th of July picnic. Uncles too,…Jim’s Great Uncle Bobby Pennington played with Bill Monroe in the late 50’s. His family is flat eat-up with musicians on all sides…and Jim is distilled from all this. It is a potent mix of good genes, fine musicianship, great songs and a large dollop of fun.
And the notes finish up with Kenney Rorrer saying:
I’ve spent many happy hours at music festivals listening to the live tones and talents of “The Amazing Jim Lloyd.” This new CD gives the listener a chance to focus on his many talents. His fans will find this CD provides superior entertainment from the multi-talented “AMAZING JIM LLOYD! Prepare to enjoy yourself!
The picture in the background of this webpage is of the 2013 Black Friday Jam. I believe he has had as many as 70 musician friends in the barber shop “Jamming” at one time.