View Full Version : Gene Christian

Pete Counter
Aug-02-2010, 4:54pm
Our bass players dad is Bluegrass pioneer Gene Christian, if you dont know who he is.. he played fiddle for two years for Bill Monroe during the Mac Wiseman years and for Flatt & Scruggs for two years and a great many years he played guitar with Ervin Rouse and Benny Martin and a great number of notable bluegrass pioneers. Sunday morning service Gene walks into our church and sits down. Our music leader asked me to sing "The Old Crossroad" Cuz she likes the way I sing it old style. With Gene sitting there I was a little nervous, but I did ok. After service he walked up to me and said "I like that song you did" I said thank you and he continued, "I used to play that song on the grand old opry with Bill Monroe" I said "I know you did, thats why I was nervous, cuz you know how its suppose to go!". He laughed and told me it was fine and then he asked me for my wifes guitar and said he wanted to teach me a song. He started singing "I heard my mother, call my name in prayer". I know the song but I let him teach it to me anyway and after he was done he bowed his head and said "thank you mother". Hes from the old school in that songs are supposed to mean something. "They tell a story" he says, "If the story dont touch you, your just making noise and everyone listening can tell" he says. We sat and talked about bluegrass and music until our bass player told him they wanted to lock up the church and I hated to let him go because even tho I do see him occasionally, I dont get to sit and talk with him like that. I could've sit there with him till evening and even at 85 He still gets excited talking about it and so was I. Its a rare privilage to learn from an elder like that and I look forward to doing it again. Just wanted to share.

Aug-02-2010, 7:23pm
And some folks wonder why we love the music! Neat story..


Aug-02-2010, 8:45pm
Thanks for sharing!

Willie Poole
Aug-02-2010, 9:08pm
Hey Pete, great story...I`m with you all the way that a good song should have a story and send a message...I try and do all of those that I can find but still do some like "Salty Dog" just to get a different sound going.....Willie