Book Review: Blind But Now I See

I just stumbled on this book while looking over new selections on my Kindle reader subscription. A recent bio of Doc Watson (very near the end of his life). The most surprising part is with my Kindle subscription this book was FREE! I couldn’t resist. It was a very good read. Deeply researched with tons of interviews with people associated with Doc. I learned a lot. There’s more about the early days of the “folk boom” than about bluegrass, but that’s OK. I was there; I remember those days! In the early 1960s bluegrass was part of “folk” music. Country music had kicked bluegrass to the curb.

I saw Doc and his son Merle in concert at the University of Maine when I was in high school. My mom and dad took me. Dad also took me in the locker room to meet Doc and Merle during the intermission, making me drag my banjo along. I played some little tune and Doc asked me to let Merle try the banjo, which he did. Merle had been playing a Vega bluegrass banjo. Doc could tell just by the sound of my banjo it was a Gibson RB 250 and he warned Merle “them tuners go the other way on a Gibson, son”. I was pretty amazed by that!

The greatest free book I’ve read in ages!

Dick Bowden

Dick Bowden recently retired after a 45 year career in the paper industry, and moved from Connecticut to Big Indian NY (Ulster County) where he ekes out a precarious existence as a groundskeeper. Dick has been performing bluegrass music on banjo and guitar since 1966 in his home state of Maine, throughout New England, and internationally with The Case Brothers - Martin & Gibson. He has performed for HVBA with the Old Time Bluegrass Singers, and also sent in a squadron of Dick Bowden's Flying Circus. Most recently Dick has played Dobro (tm) with the Tennessee Mafia Jug Band. Dick has written many articles for Bluegrass Unlimited, Bluegrass Today, MoonShiner (the Japanese bluegrass magazine) and HVBA.

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