Like his bandmates, Buddy also grew up in Haywood County. From an early age, Buddy enjoyed music; but, it wasn’t until college at Western Carolina University that he buckled down and “got serious” about bluegrass music. Buddy has been very fortunate in the musical opportunities given to him. He played regionally with the gospel bluegrass group Rock Springs Reunion which landed a song in the top ten gospel bluegrass charts. After leaving RSR, he settled into a Nashville based band, Jubal Foster, which played the Southeastern United States. Buddy has recorded and shared the stage with many artists such as Sam Bush, Rhonda Vincent, Porter Wagner, Jon Randall and more. Recently, Buddy released his first solo bluegrass project which features Tony Rice, Adam Steffey, and bandmates Tim Surrett and Marc Pruett.
I have several fiddles that I play. Currently I am playing a wonderful 1903 John Juzek violin. It is funny how instruments come along. Often the good ones find you when you are not looking. Such is the story of this instrument. We were playing an event for our friends Clark and Leatherwood. I saw a fiddle case in Larry Clark’s office and asked about it. As is turned out the violin belonged to a lady who had passed away at the age of 85. She was the last of her family with no living descendants. Her estate was to be sold and proceeds given to charity. She was a classically trained violinist and her family was originally from the Pennsylvania area. Her father had bought the violin for her. I was fortunate to be able to purchase the violin. Danny Bishop with Bishop Violin Shop set it up and made some repairs for me.
I also have a nice Magini model violin that has a great deep tone. I recorded the whole Marching Home CD with it. On the new project Last Train To Kitty Hawk I restrung the fiddle like a viola and played it on several songs. It is a great instrument! It came from Danny Bishop’s shop and was voiced by Bob Bragg out of Florida. Danny has voiced and repaired many instruments for me over the years and is in my opinion the best around. Contact Danny at Bishop’s Violin Shop 828-628-1688.
I have a 1940 Kay M-1 bass that I play from time to time. I bought it off ebay. It came out of upstate NY with the neck broken and Danny Bishop brought it to life.
I use D’Addario strings exclusively on my fiddle. D’Addario strings are consistently great. They produce great tone and have wonderful longevity.
I must also thank the folks at Strains Of Music in Waynesville NC. They are the best to work with and if they don’t have what you need, they will get it.
Visit www.BuddyMelton.com to learn more about Buddy and his new solo CD project.
In 2014, Buddy was voted as the International Bluegrass Music Association’s Male Vocalist of the Year.