• A. Trae McMaken

  • The website of the fiddler, storyteller, and tradition bearer.

Winter 2012 News, Schedule, Dances, Weather . . .

Well, the winter of 2012 is flying by. I've been up to some fun musical adventures and working on my own creative endeavors.  Besides working as a solo performer, these days I'm playing with Joseph Sobol as our duo "Lift"  and with Fred Park and Amythyst Phillips as "The Burning Desire String Band." Both groups will be performing before too long, so check out some wintertime 2012 updates to the schedule. In the Tennessee mountains, the weather has been quite mild, depriving my northern heart of the beauty of snow but being very kind to my firewood supply.

For those wondering why I'm still in Tennessee after having finished my master's degree studies in traditional music, storytelling, and regionalism, I'm happy to announce that for the winter term of this year I will be teaching old-time fiddle and banjo as an adjunct professor at East Tennessee State University. This means that I will be remaining in East Tennessee for the winter and spring, but I will be back in Michigan for the summer months and hope to play some good music there, too.

ETSU Old Time Pride Band Montage from the Down Home in Johnson City.

Last week, the ETSU Old Time Pride Band as it has existed for the past year and a half performed together for the last time. One person present made a montage of various parts of the performance and posted it online. The ETSU Old Time Pride Band consisted of:

Trae McMaken (banjo), Noah Wall (fiddle), Roy Andrade (fiddle), Quentin Acres (guitar) Amythyst Phillips (guitar), Justin Watkins (banjo uke / hammered dulcimer), Alex Moore (upright bass), and Stephanie Jeter (autoharp).

The video mostly features my back, but the music comes through.

Buckle Busters at the Down Home in Johnson City, TN

I'll be fiddling with the Buckle Busters at the Down Home in Johnson City, TN on December 14, 2011. Please join us at this iconic venue in Johnson City to watch us perform. The Buckle Busters are named after Al Hopkins and His Buckle Busters, a 1920s string band whose fiddler hailed from the Tri-Cities area. We play high-energy traditional string band music salted with old-time comedy and four part harmonies. The Buckle Busters are myself (fiddle), Quentin Acres (guitar), Alex Moore (bass), and Roy Andrade (banjo).

The Buckle Busters on stage at the White Stork Festival.



The Buckle Busters shooting the breeze.