Way behind His Time
This chapter describes the recordings of mountain fiddler Luther Strong. In 1937 Luther Strong recorded “Glory in the Meetinghouse” as one of over two dozen fiddle tunes for the Library of Congress. His playing, long admired in his community, became revered nationally through these recordings, with “Glory” among them still regarded as a masterpiece of this idiom. According to his daughter Faye, when Luther played it for his neighbors, “Everybody was wild about it. It had such get up and go.” “Glory” functioned not as a dance number, but as a virtuoso piece for listening. This was music made for music's sake. It required, Luther said, the skills that “make a fiddler.” Luther's “Glory in the Meetinghouse” brings together the personal and the historical.
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