Where to Find a Country Doc on a Sunday Night
The short answer is in a country church. If I am on call, I can’t leave Harvey County, but when I’m not I have started to stretch out a little.
This past weekend I got a call from Darin Aldridge. His dobro man had to be out of town, and he wondered if I’d play some mandolin for the Quintet for a Sunday night church service. It didn’t take long for me to say yes. I hoped I was up to it. As you have read in some of my reviews they are top shelf. Their recent CD got as fine a review as I have seen in ‘Bluegrass Unlimited’ in twenty-five years. It made it all the way to number one on the rural roots bluegrass gospel charts a few weeks.
It was a little country church, and the folks put my fears to rest. Some of the congregation had heard me play with Neuse River along the way, and they invited us to supper when we got there. It was my kind of place.
The Pastor got up with an acoustic/electric guitar and a boy played the electronic drums; the house rocked before we ever played a note.
Darin is a world class picker and his wife Brooke is a powerful singer. When she sings ‘I’ll Go With You’ it gives me goose bumps every time. Eddie Biggerstaff and Chris Bryant were so solid on the bass and banjo it wasn’t hard to fall in with them. Perry Woodie was out that night, but he is a fine dobro man, and perhaps the funniest story teller in bluegrass.
It was the first time I had been nervous for a gig in years. Darin makes his living in music and I wanted to do my best to keep it to their standards. Darin gave me a nice introduction, and then I proceeded to wreck the kick-off to ‘River of Jordan,’ but they were all good Christians and I was forgiven. After that I got in the groove and thought I did O.K. considering I had not rehearsed with them. I hope they enjoyed it as much as I did.
So, if you want to find Tommy Bibey on a Sunday night in the N.C. Piedmont, look for the Darin and Brooke Aldridge Quintet at a church near you. If I can go, I’ll get out and play a few gigs with them. Neuse River plays most of our shows on Friday or Saturday, and 98% in Harvey County, so as long as it does not conflict with that schedule, and it isn’t too far outside the Piedmont area old Doc might just come along for the ride.
I hope your church will consider booking them for special music one night. After this last CD, they are getting bigger bookings with every month that goes by, but they are still do the Sunday outings for a love offering. The guys offered to compensate me, but for me this gig is about the fellowship, the experience, and a chance to get out and meet some new folks. So, if you book them let me know and I’ll try to make it.
If was far too spiritual not to go out with them again.
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