Valdese’s George Shuffler to be inducted into Bluegrass Hall of Fame

Burke County’s The News Herald reports that “A bluegrass legend hailing from Valdese will be inducted into the International Bluegrass Hall of Fame, honoring his influences as ‘an innovative bass player, guitar stylist and featured vocalist and humorist.’

George Shuffler, 86, doesn’t perform much these days, preferring to spend time on his farm in Valdese. …

“It’s an honor. It’s an absolute honor to have that bestowed upon me,” Shuffler said of the upcoming induction. “I’ve worked at it a long time and didn’t think it’d come to this.” …

It was “just another’s day work” when Shuffler in the mid-1950s created the guitar crosspicking style and walking style bass playing that earned him the award. …

Regarding the walking bass style, “I got tired of, ‘boom, boom,’” Shuffler said with a laugh. “I just wanted to do something different.”

Shuffler thought there should be a bass note for every sound the singers were making, so he worked hard to make it happen. …

Here’s a video by Flatpicking Guitar Magazine in which Shuffler explains his cross-picking style:

Here’s Shuffler playing with Dr. Ralph Stanley & The Clinch Mountain Boys at the 2008 MerleFest Bluegrass Festival:

Here’s an interview from earlier this year with Buddy Woodward explaining why Shuffler should be voted into the Bluegrass Hall of Fame:





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About Jeff Fobes
As a long-time proponent of media for social change, my early activities included coordinating the creation of a small community FM radio station to serve a poor section of St. Louis, Mo. In the 1980s I served as the editor of the "futurist" newsletter of the U.S. Association for the Club of Rome, a professional/academic group with a global focus and a mandate to act locally. During that time, I was impressed by a journalism experiment in Mississippi, in which a newspaper reporter spent a year in a small town covering how global activities impacted local events (e.g., literacy programs in Asia drove up the price of pulpwood; soybean demand in China impacted local soybean prices). Taking a cue from the Mississippi journalism experiment, I offered to help the local Green Party in western North Carolina start its own newspaper, which published under the name Green Line. Eventually the local party turned Green Line over to me, giving Asheville-area readers an independent, locally focused news source that was driven by global concerns. Over the years the monthly grew, until it morphed into the weekly Mountain Xpress in 1994. I've been its publisher since the beginning. Mountain Xpress' mission is to promote grassroots democracy (of any political persuasion) by serving the area's most active, thoughtful readers. Consider Xpress as an experiment to see if such a media operation can promote a healthy, democratic and wise community. In addition to print, today's rapidly evolving Web technosphere offers a grand opportunity to see how an interactive global information network impacts a local community when the network includes a locally focused media outlet whose aim is promote thoughtful citizen activism. Follow me @fobes

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