1951-Present - Yancey County, North Carolina
Let me preface this biography by saying that Bruce Greene is my favorite contemporary fiddler. In the 70s and 80s, Bruce immersed himself in Kentucky fiddling, tracking down as many surviving musicians as he could. This foundation helped him build upon a style and repertoire unlike any other. 30 years ago, Bruce's playing more closely mirrored the sources he learned from, but today, it's developed into his own unique style, which still retains many of the traditional elements that make his fiddling sound authentic and ancient. His incredible technique is camoflaged by his relaxed style of playing. There have been many tunes which at first seemed easy enough while watching Bruce play them, but turned out to be quite challenging as I tried to learn them. Bruce's repertoire includes a vast number of obscure and crooked tunes, as if opening a previously locked door to a room rich with old-time music most people didn't know existed.
was born in 1951, and grew up in New Jersey. He learned to play the
guitar and five string banjo in his teens, mainly from listening to
records. His interest in traditional music started during that time
and led him to the fiddle, inspired by the New Lost City Ramblers and
some of the field recordings that were starting to become available.
In 1969, Bruce left home for college in Washington state and met the
first traditional fiddler he would come to know, a man originally from
Missouri. By that time, Bruce's interest in traditional Appalachian
music had grown quite a bit, and he moved to Kentucky to study folklore,
especially the music. Bruce began to meet some of the local Kentucky
fiddlers, and as it turned out, he spent more time seeking out and studying
the old time fiddlers than he did learning the discipline of folklore!
Out Magazine writes:
You can order "Five Miles of Ellum Wood" as well as the cassettes: "Vintage Fiddle Tunes" and "Fiddler's Dozen" directly from Bruce by writing him at 1115 Patton Thicket Road, Burnsville, NC 28714.