Curly Seckler

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Curly Seckler
Birth name John Ray Sechler
Born (1919-12-25) December 25, 1919 (age 95)
China Grove, North Carolina
Genres bluegrass
Occupation(s) Musician, vocalist
Instruments banjo
Years active 1930s–present
Associated acts Nashville Grass, Ramblin' Tommy Scott

John Ray Sechler, known as Curly Seckler, (born December 25, 1919), is an American bluegrass musician.

Early years[edit]

Born to Carrie and Calvin Sechler in China Grove, North Carolina, on December 25, 1919, "Curly" was destined to have a huge contribution on Bluegrass music. In his youth and formative years, Curly learned to play music from his parents. His father, Calvin, played old time fiddle, harmonica, and autoharp, while his mother taught him how to play the organ. Curly like most of his local contemporaries, was forced into a life of labor, tirelessly working in a local cotton mill for sustenance with his brothers. However, this laborious sentencing did not retard his musical development, Curly found time to keep up his love for music, expanding his musical knowledge by picking up the five string banjo. Seckler began learning the instrument from local musician, Happy Trexler.[1]

Career[edit]

In the early years of his professional career, Curly accompanied his brothers George and Duard, playing the tenor banjo and providing vocal harmonies. The group was called the Yodeling Rangers and they jettisoned to local stardom in 1935, when they were invited to perform daily on the radio in Salisbury, North Carolina.[1] With a fresh new name, the Trail Riders, soon began playing steadily throughout the south-eastern US. Soon the word got around, the Trail Riders had some of the finest musicians around and this notoriety caught the eye of Charlie Monroe, brother of Bill Monroe, and former guitarist of the acclaimed Monroe Brothers. After their breakup, Charlie was looking for new musicians to play with on the emerging Bluegrass circuit. Charlie Monroe proposed that Curly join him on tour, and reluctantly, the nineteen-year-old agreed, and received twenty dollars a week.[1] Seckler continued to enjoy success on the Bluegrass touring circuit, but it was not until 1949 that he would experience one of the greatest happenings in his career: joining Lester Flatt, Earl Scruggs, and the rest of the Foggy Mountain Boys band. In his new ensemble Seckler continued to sing tenor harmonies but switched instrumentation to the mandolin. Under this musical tenure, he would develop and master the Curly Seckler "Chop" rhythm technique which served as an anchor for the rhythm section of The Foggy Mountain Boys sound. Seckler stayed with the Foggy Mountain Boys until 1962, When he sought peaceful refuge amongst America's winding highways as a truck driver. Upon Lester Flatt's death in 1979, Curly returned to Bluegrass as leader of the band, Nashville Grass. Curly held this position among many others, standing in for other bands and collaborating with some of his old friends and colleagues until his retirement in 1994 ( Seckler AP).[2]

Later years[edit]

Curly contributions to Bluegrass and American music as a whole are undoubtedly, appreciated by his many fans and admirers. The International Bluegrass Music Association honored Curly in 2004 by inducting him into its International Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame;[3] Seckler was inducted into the North Carolina Music Hall of Fame in 2010.[4] His release of "Sixty Years of Bluegrass with My Friends" in 2005 on the Copper Creek label solidified Curly's place as one of the pioneers of the genre and steward of customs and traditions. Throughout his career, Seckler played with Jim and Jesse McReynolds, Mac Wiseman, the Stanley Brothers, the Nashville Grass, Doyle Lawson, and many others.

References[edit]

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[8]

  1. ^ a b c Rovi, Margaret Reges,. "Curly Seckler Biography". CMT.com. AMG. Retrieved September 28, 2011. 
  2. ^ associatedpress[full citation needed]
  3. ^ https://ibma.org/awards/hall-of-fame
  4. ^ "2010 Inductees". North Carolina Music Hall of Fame. Retrieved September 10, 2012. 
  5. ^ Crawford, Richard (2001). America's Musical Life. A History. New York, New York: Norton & Company. pp. 743– 734. ISBN 978-0-393-32726-7. 
  6. ^ Goldsmith, Thomas (2004). The Bluegrass Reader. Illinois: University Of Illinois Press. pp. 48,73,74,107. ISBN 978-0-252-07365-6. 
  7. ^ Stanley, Ralph. "Man Of Constant Sorrow" Gotham Books. 2009. 978-1-592-40425-4
  8. ^ Associated Press. "Curly Seckler". CurlySeckler.net. CurlySeckler.net. Retrieved September 28, 2011.