View Full Version : The Ronnie McCoury Interview

Aug-19-2010, 8:23am
The Mandolin Cafe has posted news:
The Ronnie McCoury Interview

The Mandolin Cafe's Forum members have the questions, and mandolin legend Ronnie McCoury has the answers for another of our extended feature interviews.


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Denny Gies
Aug-19-2010, 9:30am
Great selection of questions and a really good interview. Thanks

Aug-19-2010, 10:56am
Ronnie McCoury is my favorite living mandolin player........I got introduced to his playing from Steve Earle's "the Mountain" and been hooked ever since.. Great interview....hope he does another Homespun DVD cause I wore out the first one..........

Nelson Peddycoart
Aug-19-2010, 11:17am
Thanks again for a great interview. I always enjoy them.

Ron McMillan
Aug-20-2010, 12:31am
Superb interview that really brings across how personable and likable Ronnie must be. My only exposure to him prior to this was in the DVD he mentions, and in that he also comes across as a really nice guy - who knows his instrument better than most folks, too. Well done Cafe, and well done Ronnie McCoury for treating the questions with such openness and respect.

ron(nie) mcmillan - that's about as close as I'll ever get to being ronnie mccoury

Aug-20-2010, 4:46am
> Question from GRW3: Now that you are in the transition period from the Del McCoury Band to the Travelin' McCourys you are spending more time as the lead singer. How does this affect your rhythm playing?

Ronnie McCoury: GRW3, I would have to say the hardest part of the transition is the varied guitar rhythms we now play with. The Travelin' McCourys don't have a regular guitarist and use whoever is available. I'm so used to playing alongside my father's rhythm that I feel like I do have to concentrate more on it, especially when singing. As far as the mic'd question, I don't always find it as comfortable playing with everyone mic'd. It's hard to get a good balance and someone is usually too loud or not right in the mix. When playing around a central mic you mix yourself and you get better dynamics. In most cases this is easier to play rhythm with. <
End of Quote

In this excellent interview I find this question and answer one of the most memorable ones especially when you read it in the context with the last question referring to playing electric mandolin.

It touches on very improtant aspects of acoustic musicianship, amplification, and playing together.

Whatever music you play with others allways means interaction with them. It means that you have to - without necessarily compromising your style - blend the sound of all instruments into a pleasing mix. Rythm is an integral part of that and the quoted answer shows its importance taking the guitar as an example. Blending music on stage is the most improtant thing to achieve a balanced sound. The interview covers the different aspects, especially interaction on stage as opposed to playing either amplified or over single mics (where apparently the soundman dominates the mix and often fails to please the musicians at least).

As a sidenote with regards to the mic preferences: I think the mics are Neumans not Nuemans. And they are great mics indeed. The Hamburg appearance in 1999 (The Mountain tour) was stellar.

The only thing I missed was a comparison between the Loar and the S-hole 1981 Gilchrist (tone-bar) sound.

Rick Cadger
Aug-20-2010, 5:38am
Great interview.

What a polite guy... and a great player!

Ivan Kelsall
Aug-21-2010, 2:10am
Ronnie very much seems to take after his father Del,one of the most likeable,polite & un-assuming musicians i've ever had the pleasure of meeting. I met him briefly at Owensboro in '92 & he's rightly become one of the leading 'elder statesmen ' in Bluegrass music.
I've never had the pleasure of meeting Ronnie,but i can't help feeling it would be another 'Del-like' experience - & he's a great player indeed,

Mike Snyder
Aug-21-2010, 4:39am
His mom was running the concession at a gig they did in a bar in Lawrence Ks. a few years ago. Selling CDs and t shirts. It was a little strange. The Bottleneck was not exactly their normal type of gig, I suppose. Ronnie was very attentive to her, checking to see if she needed anything, apologising for the smoky air and generally being a good son. They reminded me of some folks I put up hay for when I was a kid. Working people, no pretensions.

Darren Bailey
Aug-21-2010, 12:57pm
To see Ronnie McCoury answering a question by first using my name has pretty much made my weekend - I thought I had grown out of this kind of feeling but it genuinely got me all excited to see my favourite musician addressing my query. Thanks.

Mandolin Cafe
Aug-19-2018, 7:22am
Noting today's anniversary of the publication of this interview.