As part of the Introduction to Folk Music class taught by Lynette Swiger, a folk music concert featuring Kim Johnson and Bobby Taylor is planned for 7 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 9, in The Great Room of Cultures at the Frank and Jane Gabor West Virginia Folklife Center. The public is invited to attend and admission is free. Additionally, the Kennedy Barn String Band will provide pre-concert music for the enjoyment of early arrivals.
Kim Johnson is from Clendenin, West Virginia, and has been playing banjo since 1978. She has played with numerous renowned folk musicians at music festivals and events throughout the Appalachian region, and has traveled extensively throughout the United States and internationally to share the spirit and style of traditional Appalachian music. Kim mentored under and performed extensively with Clay County fiddler Wilson Douglas until his death in 1999. Wilson was a prominent old-time fiddler whose soulful, mountain style of playing is still highly respected and copied today.
At this time, Kim plans to be accompanied by Bobby Taylor, a superb fourth-generation West Virginia fiddler who has played the fiddle for over 40 years, starting at the age of 13. He learned his music from the legendary Clark Kessinger and Mike Humphreys, both of whom lived near his home in Dunbar, West Virginia. Bobby’s musical performances have included many major festivals throughout West Virginia and the Eastern United States as well as the Kennedy Center, the Chicago Folk Festival and the Bluegrass and Old-time Music Festival in Harrietville, Australia, as well as the National Folk Festival in Canberra, Australia.
This performance promises to be a treat for anyone who enjoys the root music of West Virginia, and the Folklife Center is excited to offer their performance to the public.