Tommy Hunter (fiddler)

Last updated
Tommy Hunter
Born(1919-09-18)18 September 1919
Origin Mars Hill, North Carolina
Died 20 August 1993(1993-08-20) (aged 73)
Instruments fiddle

Tommy Hunter (18 September 1919 – 20 August 1993) was an American fiddler from Mars Hill, North Carolina.

Fiddle musical instrument

Fiddling refers to the act of playing the fiddle, and fiddlers are musicians that play it. A fiddle is a bowed string musical instrument, most often a violin. It is a colloquial term for the violin, used by players in all genres including classical music. Although violins and fiddles are essentially synonymous, the style of the music played may determine specific construction differences between fiddles and classical violins. For example, fiddles may optionally be set up with a bridge with a flatter arch to reduce the range of bow-arm motion needed for techniques such as the double shuffle, a form of bariolage involving rapid alternation between pairs of adjacent strings. To produce a "brighter" tone, compared to the deeper tones of gut or synthetic core strings, fiddlers often use steel strings. The fiddle is part of many traditional (folk) styles, which are typically aural traditions—taught 'by ear' rather than via written music.

Mars Hill, North Carolina Town in North Carolina, United States

Mars Hill is a town in Madison County, North Carolina, United States. The population was 1,869 at the 2010 U.S. Census, and was estimated at 2,197 in 2016 by the U.S. Census. It is the home of Mars Hill University, the name of which was inspired by Acts 17:22. The town is located 15 miles (24 km) due north of Asheville, western North Carolina's largest city. Interstate 26 passes a mile east of the town. It is part of the Asheville Metropolitan Statistical Area.



Hunter started playing the fiddle when he was seven years old. He was brother to vilionist, Nan Fisher. At age twelve he played with his father's band on a radio station in Asheville, North Carolina. Hunter was a 1989 North Carolina Folk Heritage recipient. [1] He recorded several albums; the final one was recorded in 1993 with The Carroll Best Band. Hunter was no longer able to play due to illness, but a selection of his previous recordings was mixed with the band in the studio. Hunter died on August 20, 1993, two days after previewing the album's final mix.

Asheville, North Carolina City in North Carolina, United States

Asheville is a city and the county seat of Buncombe County, North Carolina, United States. It is the largest city in Western North Carolina, and the 12th-most populous city in the U.S. state of North Carolina. The city's population was 89,121 according to 2016 estimates. It is the principal city in the four-county Asheville metropolitan area, with a population of 424,858 in 2010.

North Carolina State of the United States of America

North Carolina is a state in the southeastern region of the United States. It borders South Carolina and Georgia to the south, Tennessee to the west, Virginia to the north, and the Atlantic Ocean to the east. North Carolina is the 28th-most extensive and the 9th-most populous of the U.S. states. The state is divided into 100 counties. The capital is Raleigh, which along with Durham and Chapel Hill is home to the largest research park in the United States. The most populous municipality is Charlotte, which is the second-largest banking center in the United States after New York City.

John McCutcheon lists Hunter as a source for several tunes he has recorded. McCutcheon recorded Hunter's tune "Laurel Branch" on his album Barefoot Boy With Boots On. McCutcheon also cites Hunter as a source for several tunes on The Wind That Shakes The Barley.

John McCutcheon folk music singer

John McCutcheon is an American folk music singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist who has produced 34 albums since the 1970s. He is regarded as a master of the hammered dulcimer, and is also proficient on many other instruments including guitar, banjo, autoharp, mountain dulcimer, fiddle, and jawharp.

Related Research Articles

Tommy Lee American drummer

Thomas Lee Bass is an American musician and founding member of Mötley Crüe. As well as being the band's long-term drummer, Lee founded rap-metal band Methods of Mayhem, and has pursued solo musical projects.

The Doobie Brothers American rock band

The Doobie Brothers are an American rock band from San Jose, California. The group has sold more than 40 million albums worldwide. It has been active for five decades, with its greatest success in the 1970s.

In Ireland, a rebel song is a folk song whose lyrics extol the deeds of actual or fictional participants in any of the various armed rebellions against English, and later British, rule in Ireland. Songs about older rebellions were long popular with most Irish nationalists; more recent songs are associated with supporters of physical force Irish republicanism.

Lets Active

Let's Active is an American rock group formed in Winston-Salem, North Carolina in 1981, and often identified with the jangle pop guitar work of the group's frontman and songwriter Mitch Easter. After disbanding in 1990, the group reformed in August 2014 to play a benefit show in North Carolina.

The Marshall Tucker Band American Southern rock band

The Marshall Tucker Band is an American rock band from Spartanburg, South Carolina. Noted for incorporating blues, country and jazz into its eclectic sound, The Marshall Tucker Band helped establish the Southern rock genre in the early 1970s. While the band had reached the height of its commercial success by the end of the decade, it has recorded and performed continuously under various lineups for 45 years.

Poor Old Lu was a pioneering alternative Christian band based in the American Northwest. The band experimented with a variety of sounds and genres, particularly grunge, funk and psychedelic rock. The band consisted of Scott Hunter (vocals), Jesse Sprinkle (drums), Aaron Sprinkle (guitar), and Nick Barber (bass). Hunter was the lyricist who wrote on philosophical, metaphorical, and spiritually oriented topics. Common themes in the lyrics include introspective struggles with identity and spirituality, struggles with a superficial, secular, and modern society, and hope for life abundant. The Encyclopedia of Contemporary Christian Music calls the band "One of the most accomplished and creative Christian bands of the '90s".

Paul Van Arsdale was an American hammered dulcimer player from North Tonawanda in upstate New York.

Clarence "Tom" Ashley was an American musician and singer, who played the clawhammer banjo and the guitar. He began performing at medicine shows in the Southern Appalachian region as early as 1911, and gained initial fame during the late 1920s as both a solo recording artist and as a member of various string bands. After his "rediscovery" during the folk revival of the 1960s, Ashley spent the last years of his life playing at folk music concerts, including appearances at Carnegie Hall in New York and at the Newport Folk Festival in Rhode Island.

<i>The Wind That Shakes the Barley</i> (film) 2006 film by Ken Loach

The Wind That Shakes the Barley is a 2006 war drama film directed by Ken Loach, set during the Irish War of Independence (1919–1921) and the Irish Civil War (1922–1923). Written by long-time Loach collaborator Paul Laverty, this drama tells the fictional story of two County Cork brothers, Damien O'Donovan and Teddy O'Donovan, who join the Irish Republican Army to fight for Irish independence from the United Kingdom. The film takes its title from Robert Dwyer Joyce's "The Wind That Shakes the Barley", a song set during the 1798 rebellion in Ireland and featured early in the film. The film is heavily influenced by Walter Macken's 1964 novel The Scorching Wind.

Root Boy Slim American singer

Root Boy Slim was the stage name assumed by American musician Foster MacKenzie III. He was born in Asheville, North Carolina but raised in Washington, D.C.'s Maryland suburbs. He was an exceptionally bright child with parents who were able to afford a series of costly prep schools, and he attended Yale University. He returned to Maryland upon receiving his bachelor's degree and was diagnosed with schizophrenia following an LSD-induced psychotic episode. In the 1970s, he formed his own alternative rock band, including musicians such as tenor saxophonist Ron Holloway) and an ensemble titled Crying Out Loud. Mackenzie's group was ultimately billed as Root Boy Slim and the Sex Change Band. The band cultivated a dedicated fan base, largely confined to the Washington metropolitan area.

"The Wind That Shakes the Barley" is an Irish ballad written by Robert Dwyer Joyce (1836–1883), a Limerick-born poet and professor of English literature. The song is written from the perspective of a doomed young Wexford rebel who is about to sacrifice his relationship with his loved one and plunge into the cauldron of violence associated with the 1798 rebellion in Ireland. The references to barley in the song derive from the fact that the rebels often carried barley or oats in their pockets as provisions for when on the march. This gave rise to the post-rebellion phenomenon of barley growing and marking the "croppy-holes," mass unmarked graves into which slain rebels were thrown, symbolizing the regenerative nature of Irish resistance to British rule. As the barley will grow every year in the Spring time of the year this is said to symbolize Irish resistance to British oppression and that Ireland will never yield and will always oppose British rule on the island.

Barley Bree was a Northern Irish-Canadian band active in the 1980s and '90s. They comprised Tyrone brothers Tom Sweeney and Jimmy Sweeney, Buncrana fiddler P.V. O'Donnell, Brian Doherty and Seamus O'Hagan (Cookstown). The group was formed in Northern Ireland but moved to Canada in 1977. From their base in Nova Scotia, they widely toured North America. They released eight successful albums and fronted a weekly television series called Barley Bree which lasted for two years. Since breaking up, they have reunited several times at the Milwaukee Irish Fest.

Kevin Crawford English tin whistle and bodhrán player

Kevin Crawford is an English flute, tin whistle, Low whistle and bodhrán player. He was born in England to Irish emigrant parents from Milltown Malbay, County Clare. He later moved to West Clare to improve his music and become more exposed to traditional Irish music.

Seán McGinley is an Irish actor. He has appeared in about 80 films and television series.

Steve Hunter American musician

Stephen John Hunter is an American guitarist, primarily a session player. He has worked with Lou Reed and Alice Cooper and been often called "The Deacon". Hunter first played with Mitch Ryder's Detroit, beginning a long association with record producer Bob Ezrin who has said Steve Hunter has contributed so much to rock music in general that he truly deserves the designation of "Guitar Hero". Steve Hunter has played some of the greatest riffs in rock history - that first slamming solo that rings in Aerosmith's "Train Kept A Rollin'", the acoustic intro on Peter Gabriel's "Solsbury Hill" and he wrote the legendary intro interlude that made Lou Reed's live version of "Sweet Jane" Reed's first gold record.

<i>The Wind That Shakes the Barley</i> (album) album by Loreena McKennitt

The Wind That Shakes the Barley is the ninth studio album by the Canadian singer, songwriter, accordionist, harpist, and pianist Loreena McKennitt, which was released on November 12, 2010.

The Who Tour 1970 was a series of performances and tours by The Who in support of both their Tommy and Live at Leeds albums.

The Who Tour 1968 was a series of performances and tours by The Who, supporting releases such as The Who Sell Out album and the "Magic Bus" single.

"Foggy Dew" is the name of several Irish ballads, and of an Irish lament. The song chronicles the Easter Uprising of 1916, and encourages Irishmen to fight for the cause of Ireland, rather than for the British Empire, as so many young men were doing in World War I.


  1. "Long Bow Master:Tommy Hunter". Welcome to Madison County, North Carolina. 2013-02-08. Retrieved 2016-04-08.