Charles Faurot Reminisces

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from “Making Round Peak Music,” by James Randolph Ruchala:

 Charles Faurot tells of how a record collecting trip led to the first records of Tommy Jarrell, Fred Cockerham and Oscar Jenkins:

 
At the 1967 Galax Fiddlers Convention, Rich Nevins and Dave Freeman, both avid collectors of 78’s, ran into Oscar Jenkins. Because Oscar’s father, Frank, was one of DaCosta Woltz’s Southern Broadcasters, they asked him if Oscar thought Tommy Jarrell, also a son of one of the members of the Southern Broadcasters, might have some 78’s.

Oscar replied, “I don’t know.”

They asked him, “Do you want to take a drive over there?”

He said, “Why not.”

And off they went. Shortly after arriving at Tommy’s house, Dave and Rich asked, “Got any 78’s?”

Tommy answered, “No. Say, Oscar, got your banjo in the car?”

“Sure do.”

“Get it and we’ll play some tunes.”

…. When Rich and Dave found me back in Galax, they were raving about the live music they had just heard. In the days that followed, Rich and I spent a lot of time recording Tommy and Oscar together….
During a break in one of the early recording sessions, one of us mentioned we knew Fred Cockerham. Tommy perked up and said, “You know Fred? I grew up with him.”

We wasted no time going to Fred’s house and bringing him back to Tommy’s. When they got back together again for the first time in a number of years, it was as if they had never been apart so tight-knit was their playing.

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One Response to “Charles Faurot Reminisces”

  1. REED MARTIN Says:

    I wonder if anyone will every have the sparkle in their eyes that Tommy Jarrell had. We sure were lucky to go to the fiddlers conventions and be around him. A country gentleman in person.

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