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Thread: Buzz Busby

  1. #1

    Default Buzz Busby

    What year was his A50?Was it Modified? Where is it now, He sure could make it sound good

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    Default Re: Buzz Busby

    Buzz was a pretty good friend of mine....I can say that his A-50 wasn`t altered in any way that I know of, in fact most of the time he had problems with it and didn`t know what to do about them, John Duffey has worked on it a few times but just made set ups and minor things like that....I don`t have any idea what year the mandolin is but I first met Buzz in 1955 and he had it then so it has to be older than that....I would guess that Tom Mindte has that mandolin now...Tom is a huge student of Buzz`s playing and he can reached on the web at Patuxent Recordings....There is some nice stories regarding Buzz if you just type his name in on the web....I have read most of them trying to see if any mentioned his A-50 but didn`t find any info on it....I let Buzz play an F-12 that I owned one once and he liked it so much that he didn`t give it back to me until 2 AM when their show was completed...I really liked Buzz and wish that he would have not been hooked on drugs and booze most of his life, he was two different people one when he was high and completely different when he was straight....A great blugrass pioneer, thats for sure....

    Willie

  3. #3

    Default Re: Buzz Busby

    If you have never listened to Buzz Busby, do it. His mando skills were like no other is certain ways, especially his tremolo.
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    Mando accumulator allenhopkins's Avatar
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    Default Re: Buzz Busby

    Some really rough but interesting vids of Busby on YouTube. This one shows off his tremolo, though:



    No idea who the other band members are. Willie?
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    Default Re: Buzz Busby

    Tom mindte on bass, Lucky Sayler on guitar, can`t see the banjo player too well....Looks a little like Eddie Adcock? Go on the web and they show quite a few U-tubes of Buzz and they might list the pickers in the credits....

    I don`t think it was Adcock on banjo after listening to the singing because the baritone part was not up to his standards, although that video was made a long time ago.....I have picked a few sessions with Lucky, a good rhythm guitar player....

    willie

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    Registered User William Smith's Avatar
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    Default Re: Buzz Busby

    Yes Buzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz!!,,another true original,,,for sure had his own style,not like a lot of these newer players that wanna be the same/or should I say sound the same

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    Mando accumulator allenhopkins's Avatar
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    Default Re: Buzz Busby

    Quote Originally Posted by Willie View Post
    ...can`t see the banjo player too well....Looks a little like Eddie Adcock? Go on the web and they show quite a few U-tubes of Buzz and they might list the pickers in the credits.... I don`t think it was Adcock on banjo after listening to the singing because the baritone part was not up to his standards, although that video was made a long time ago...
    Credits of the Choking the Strings Busby vid, list Jim Bowman as the banjo player.

    Quick bio from Banjo Hangout:

    Have played with various bands playing banjo, fiddle, guitar, mandolin, bass and singing whatever part is left over. Most recently played with Fritts Family Bluegrass Band. My uncle is Fiddlin' Charlie Bowman, famous early fiddler and songwriter. Wrote East Tennessee Blues and credited with writing lyrics to Nine Pound Hammer.
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    Traditional Bluegrasser Matteo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Buzz Busby

    As you might know, Buzz is one of my all-time favorites and a great influence on my style.
    His strength, power, delivery and feeling are unmatched!

    I have an old (1979) issue of the "Mandolin Notebook" that has Buzz on the cover and features an extensive and rather insightful interview with him. In that interview, among several topics, he talks about the various mandolins he had during his career. Unfortunately he doesn't say what year his A-50 is, but he states that he bought it in 1952.

    I don't believe it was ever modified...Later in the interview he adds: "When I was younger I seemed to be able to get a tone out of any mandolin", and: "Scott Stoneman used to tell me that people were jealous of me and him, 'cause we could pick up a piece of trash and make it sound like a real good instrument", referring to the use of a borrowed Martin mandolin on one of his Starday sessions.

    I guess it was all in Buzz's hand.
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  10. #9

    Default Re: Buzz Busby

    It aint the arrow its the indian

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    Default Re: Buzz Busby

    I never heard of Buzz until about 10 years ago. I was given a few cd's copied from old records. One word describes his playing for me: DYNAMIC!!!

    Bob
    re simmers

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    Default Re: Buzz Busby

    Allen, On one of the U-Tube video Buzz calls the banjo player "Farmer Jim"...I have picked with Jimmy Bowman and I didn`t think it was him, unless it is a different Jim Bowman, the one I know would have been a young kid at that time, he was a student of Don Renos and plays a whole like Don, I guess maybe that video isn`t as old as I thought if that is the same Jim Bowman....

    Bob, Do you know if Tom Mindte has Buzz`s old A-50? I heard somewhere that he had it but you know how gossip goes sround....I can give Tom a call soon and ask him....

    Willie

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    Mando accumulator allenhopkins's Avatar
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    Default Re: Buzz Busby

    Willie, I defer to your knowledge, as always; just passed along what the YouTube credits said. I have no background on that series of Busby vids, obviously shot from the back of a small club. A little "documentary" that we're lucky to have; Busby flew under the radar for so long, a mandolin player who was really admired, but who never achieved even "near-stardom" for a variety of reasons. Those blurry vids with their bad sound, may be all that most Cafe people ever see or hear of him. Too damn bad, IMHO.
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    Default Re: Buzz Busby

    Quote Originally Posted by allenhopkins View Post
    Those blurry vids with their bad sound, may be all that most Cafe people ever see or hear of him. Too damn bad, IMHO.
    Sorry to dig up an old thread, but just ran into this recording:

    Buzz Busby and the Bayou Boys
    1957
    WARL AM
    Arlington VA

    Buzz Busby
    Tom Morgan
    Bill Blackburn - Banjo
    Bill - Bass

    1. Nobody Loves me
    2. Maybe You'll change your mind
    3.
    4. Florida Blues
    5. I'm lonesome without you
    6. Just me and the Jukebox
    7. I'm working on a building
    8. Wake up Susan ?
    9. Don't Stop the Music
    10. Uncle Pen
    11. Gone Home
    12. Outro
    13.
    14.


    1957--wow.

    Is that the Tom Morgan on bass??

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    Default Re: Buzz Busby

    I suppose that is "The Tom Morgan" on guitar since he lived in this area for quite a few years...I always said I was lucky to have been around so many great bluegrass and country entertainers while growing up, sure a lot of good ones that came from this DC., Md., and Northern Va area and I was blessed to have rubbed elbows with a lot of them...I guess a few of them have long forgotten me since they have gone on to bigger and better things...One thing I will always remember is that Eddie Stubbs played his first paid gig with my band at a VFW hall in Silver Spring Md. and look where he is now...Brings a tear to my eyes...

    Willie

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    Registered User almeriastrings's Avatar
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    Default Re: Buzz Busby

    Wow. That brings back memories.. one of the very first Bluegrass records I ever found was one of those old Starday compilations and it had Buzz Busby on there doing "Just me and the Jukebox" and a couple of others. He certainly has THE sound... that 'Lonesome' thing going on, with amazing drive, rather like the Stanley's. You can really hear his powerful tremolo in this rare recording from 1976:

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    Loarcutus of MandoBorg DataNick's Avatar
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    Default Re: Buzz Busby

    This thread is great!...love the "lonesome" tremolo!...shows you it's the picker as nothing real special about an A-50...
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    Default Re: Buzz Busby

    That record cover isn`t the right one for that recording that was playing...That cover has Buzz, Pete Pike, Don Stover and John Hall on it, not those that were listed....I don`t know who the bass player would be for that session....I watched that band a many a night at The Pine Tavern In DC and got to know all of them pretty well....

    Stover`s son, Gerry, is still in this area and has played some gigs with my band from time to time... Ed Ferris went on to do big things with The Country Gents and later with Cliff Waldron, a finer person never walked this earth than Ed...We had many good times together, he introduced me to a lot of super pickers....Namely John Duffey and all of the Gents...

    Some great memories, too bad we can`t go back to "THE GOOD OLD DAYS"....

    Willie

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    Default Re: Buzz Busby

    Just another note....I bought a 1950 Gibson F-12 and went to watch Buzz one night and asked him to play it on the stage so I could hear what it sounded like with someone else playing it and he wouldn`t give it back to me until the last set was over and said he didn`t know there was a better sounding mandolin then his A-50 which was played an awful lot during his time....I later had the F-12 converted to an F-5 with fern inlay on the peg head and sold it...A big mistake, I might add...it was a good one for sure...

    Sorry to run on and on but seeing this thread brought back some good memories....

    Willie

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    Loarcutus of MandoBorg DataNick's Avatar
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    Default Re: Buzz Busby

    Keep the stories about Buzz coming Willie!...I for one, am enjoying getting to know a little about one Mr. Buzz Busby!
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    Default Re: Buzz Busby

    For a while in the mid-1970s, Buzz actually got a bit of national exposure through the 1974 Rounder 0031 LP, which was in virtually all the Tower Records stores- I recall seeing it here in LA in the store on Sunset and down at the County Record Sales store in Venice. It was visible in both places for several years, indicating that it was sold and re-stocked multiple times.

    http://www.discogs.com/Buzz-Busby-Le...elease/2696509

    There was some indication that the material w/Leon Morris that was released on "Honky Tonk Bluegrass" in 1974, was actually recorded around 1972.

    I expect that Willie will know a lot more about about the performance quality of what's on the LP than whoever wrote the notes for the album.

    Considering Buzz's active radio (and TV) presence, I would expect other recordings of radio performances and even kinescopes of TV performances to eventually show up on You Tube.

    Nice to hear Don Stover (a personal favorite) play on the WAMU/Henderson radio show.

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    Default Re: Buzz Busby

    Bob, about all I know of this album is that all of the cuts were not recorded at the same time, it is what I would call a "cut and paste" album taking songs the Dick Drevo recorded at different times with Buzz and put them all on one album...That is done quite a bit with performers calling it "The best of"....I still see Leon Morris at times and if I remember I will ask him about the album and see what he says about it....Not sure if he is still doing any shows or not....

    Willie

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    Mando accumulator allenhopkins's Avatar
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    Default Re: Buzz Busby

    Buzz Busby on the A-50, his take on Listen To the Mockingbird. Lousy video quality, un-synched sound, but still--



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    Default Re: Buzz Busby

    Very cool, thanks Allen!
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  33. #24

    Default Re: Buzz Busby

    Just discovered Buzz Busby recently, looking into the cover of “Lost” by Old & In The Way. Aside from “Going Home”, the Starday recordings, what else on CD is available new or used? I especially love when Emerson and Stoneman are backing him up. I need more Buzz!!!

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    Default Re: Buzz Busby


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