Bluegrass Doctor Weekend

       We got a jump-start on the weekend last night. I played with my wife’s band (Guitared and Feathered) at Harvey Nursing Home. It’s just as regular tour stop for them as the bar scene is for aging rock ‘n rollers, but they don’t need chicken wire to protect the stage from flying beer bottles. The bass player is really cute, doesn’t chew tobacco, and takes me home after the gig! (She’s my wife) I have the life.

      A big thunder storm came up right as we were ready to go. They almost called it off because of the weather. The residents met. Their leader is a lady who will be 100 in May.  She said, “tell ’em the show must go on. For all we know we might not be here next month.”

        I don’t know about y’all, but I ain’t ever gonna turn down anyone that brave. The ladies rocked the house, and at the end of the show that elderly woman went down the hall on her walker singing “Bye Bye Love.”

        Today I play in a bluegrass celebrity golf tournament. (They forgot to ask if I was a celebrity so I signed up anyway.) I’m not sure who drew J.D. Crowe. Don’t tell anyone, but I am paired with a former Florida mini-tour veteran who once played in the British Amateur. I heard Greg Luck was gonna be there, and I figured it was my only shot at him. Greg is a stout player. He knows good and well I’m old, have a bad back, and can’t hit it anymore, so he usually feels sorry for me.       

        Wednesday I made sure the old Neuse River converted school bus was up to another tour season. I pulled away the canvas circus tent cover that protects it for the winter, climbed in, and turned the key. As one old bluegrass boy said, “She crunk right up.” Me, Moose Dooley, Rossie Douglas, the Warbler, and the whole gang are gonna troop over to Cherryville, N.C. for the Darin and Brooke Aldridge festival. It’s the good old days all over again.  Check their web site for all the details.

        What a line up. Tonight it is Closer Walk and also the youth band. The kids are often amazing talents; I always scout for who might play for me when I get to the Nursing Home. Darin and Brooke will play a set too.

        Saturday kicks off with the eclectic Rev. Al Dunkelman and New Plowed Ground, and then the Harris Brothers come on.  They are one of the best blues bands I’ve ever heard. Balsam Range is there; they are some the finest new progressive bluegrass guys on the planet, and so is J.D. Crowe, the master of the traditional 5 string banjo. And Lord knows Darin and Brooke are my favorite husband/wife duo anywhere, a blend of modern acoustic country duets, gospel, and bluegrass that is unsurpassed. 

        Me, I’m gonna take it all in. In beween stage shows, I’ll sit under a shade tree with my wife, count my blessings, and jam with anyone who comes along and wants to play.

        Come pick one with me if you get a chance. I’m the old guy is a straw hat and sunglasses; can’t miss me. Y’all have a fine weekend; old Doc is gonna rock the best he can.

Dr. B

Explore posts in the same categories: favorite known bands, memorable gigs, Thought of the Day, Writing


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4 Comments on “Bluegrass Doctor Weekend”

  1. Gosh, doc, you sound like you have an awesome weekend planned! More exciting than mine for sure :).

    • drtombibey Says:


      I’ve always been this way but gotten more so with age. Be it work or play, I try to make every day like it was the last. We all have some wasted days, but none it was the times I spent with my bluegrass pals.

      Dr. B

  2. Ted Lehmann Says:

    Dr. B – I don’t hear Balsam Range as progressive, rather, they’re a traditional band playing contemporary music that could have been written forty years ago, but wasn’t. Oh, I think I saw you at the golf tournament, and I’ll be posting a picture of your unique swing on my blog, maybe by tomorrow. – Ted (The Professor)

    • drtombibey Says:


      I guess I should say they are true bluegrass with a modern take on things. They sure are good, huh?

      At one time I got down to a 5 handicap, but age has taken it’s toll. But even as a young fellow, I think they thought if I won much it’d set back golf a decade. We didn’t have anyone to teach us and dug it out of the dirt. (It beat picking cotton)

      Dr. B

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