Great Southern Old Time Fiddlers’ Convention Is March 15

Tuesday, February 18, 2014
Fiddlers-WG Keith,Gid Tanner,AA Gray,Henry West in 1919.
Fiddlers-WG Keith,Gid Tanner,AA Gray,Henry West in 1919.

The Chattanooga Old Fiddlers’ Association will host the Great Southern Old Time Fiddlers’ Convention Saturday, March 15. The event will begin at noon and be held in historic Lindsay Street Hall at 901 Lindsay St. in downtown Chattanooga.  

The event will include performances as well as contests as the "top old time musicians of the south" compete for top honors and cash prizes in categories such as old time banjo, dance, traditional song and string band. The main event, however, is the old time fiddle competition, where fiddlers from half a dozen states let the rosin fly as they battle each other with fiddle and bow for the honor of Champion Fiddler of the South.

The contest began in Chattanooga in 1925 and has a long and rich history, regularly drawing all the best musicians from the southeast. A local musician, Matt Downer, revived the event in 2010. “Gid Tanner, Clayton McMichen, Uncle Dave Macon – all the big names in early recorded string band music, they all made it a yearly tradition to come here to Chattanooga and compete against some of our best local fiddlers like ‘Sawmill’ Tom Smith, Jess Young and Lowe Stokes,” Mr. Downer said, “Anytime you can reach back 80 years into your city’s musical past and bring back a piece of that history, it is really something special. This music, old time music, is just as alive, relevant and important today as it was back when the event started. If you turn on your radio today, a lot of what you would hear is dance music. Old time music is a link in the chain - it has been played as dance music for centuries. This type of history isn’t kept behind glass or in museums and such – this is living history, this is the people’s music.”

Admission is $10 and children under 12 are admitted free. Contest registration is free with paid admission. Food and drinks will be available and the public is cordially invited to come and experience the southern tradition. 

For more information visit or the Facebook event page -!/events/230109543837975/.

Great Southern fiddlers
Great Southern fiddlers

May Lineup At Charles And Myrtle's Coffeehouse

Here is the May lineup and reviews for Charles and Myrtle's Coffeehouse, located inside Christ Unity Church at 105 McBrien Road.  Shows begin at 8 p.m. and there is a $10 suggested donation at the door.  Coffee, tea and homemade cookies are available.  For more information call 504-7258. May 3 Richard Smith  Now residing in Nashville, Richard has toured ... (click for more)

Open Call Auditions For The Chattanooga Theatre Centre's Production Of Les Miserables

Auditions for Les Miserables, directed by George Quick with music direction by Tim Hinck, will be held  Monday & Tuesday, April 28 & 29 at 7:30 p.m. at the Chattanooga Theatre Centre, 400 River Street, on Chattanooga's NorthShore. No appointment is necessary; actors can choose to audition either evening. Actors are asked to arrive by 7:30 p.m. to sign in and ... (click for more)

Catoosa Man Convicted Of Sexual Abuse Of 5 Young Girls Gets Life Plus 250 Years

A Catoosa County man convicted of the sexual abuse of five young girls and possession of child pornography has been sentenced to life plus 250 years. James Martin Ferris, 34, was found guilty after a recent trial. The day after his conviction, Judge Ralph Van Pelt set the sentence. Ferris on June 5, 2013, was indicted by the Catoosa County Grand Jury on 46 counts.   ... (click for more)

Rev. Jesse Jackson To Be Guest Speaker At City-Wide Peace And Love Rally On Friday

Rev. Jesse Jackson will be the speaker at the City Wide Peace and Love Rally at Olivet Baptist Church, 740 East ML King Blvd.,  on Friday, from 5:15-7 p.m. Rev. Jackson is the founder and president of Rainbow PUSH Coalition. Cedric Pendleton, actor and humanitarian with Have and Have Nots/House of Payne/Fantasia Story, will be the special guest. (click for more)

Use The Current Rail System Already In Place - And Response

Why spend $20 million or more on an unproven system to run from the Southside of Chattanooga when we already have the beginnings of a system?  The question apparently has surfaced of why the Choo Choo City doesn't have a rail line. We do have a rail line with the Tennessee Valley RR Museum and their hardware. And they already make runs from the Southside to close to Enterprise ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: UAW Voices In Detroit

Today we are going to eavesdrop on somewhat of an open conversation that was held far to the north after the United Auto Workers surprisingly dropped a legal challenge with the National Labor Relations Board in Chattanooga the first thing on Monday morning. The NLRB judge certified the VW workers’ February vote to turn away the UAW at Chattanooga’s Volkswagen manufacturing plant ... (click for more)