Mac Traynhamfiddle, clawhammer banjo, rhythm guitar
Mac Traynham is an accomplished fiddler and banjo player as well as a fine guitar player and singer. Influenced by well known and obscure musicians of the past, Mac has developed a hard-driving style of playing which keeps the rhythm going strongly and delights dancers! He teaches at numerous music camps and has won many ribbons from various Fiddler’s Conventions.
Morgan Fichterpiano, fiddle, early childhood music education
Raised on a farm in southern Ohio, Morgan Fichter is a passionate educator who has toured and performed as a violinist with symphony orchestras and rock bands all over the world. Having toured Eastern Europe under the baton of Leonard Bernstein as principal second violin with the Boston Youth Symphony Orchestra, Morgan received a scholarship to attend the Oberlin Conservatory in 1986. She has since toured internationally with numerous bands, made appearances on the Jay Leno and David Letterman Shows, and performed on the multi-platinum selling MTV Unplugged album. Certified in early childhood music education by MUSIC TOGETHER, Morgan has worked as a preschool teacher’s assistant and music appreciation instructor, and she has over two decades of experience as a private piano instructor for children and adults. She embraces a playful approach to childhood music education and believes that no child is too young to discover the joy in making music! Morgan’s roots in Appalachia brought her back to old time music and she is thrilled to now call Floyd home.
Andy Buckmanclawhammer banjo
Andy has played clawhammer banjo and sung in church since childhood. He has performed and recorded with Mac and Jenny Traynham, the Reed Island Rounders, and the Wolfe Brothers, and has taught at numerous workshops. His music is rooted in the playing of Wade Ward, Abe Horton, and Harold Hausenfluck. Andy teaches both fretted and fretless banjo in traditional Blue Ridge clawhammer and thumb lead styles.
Andrew Smallfiddle, banjo, mandolin, guitar, bass, dulcimer, singing
Born and raised in eastern North Carolina, Andrew Small is a multi-instrumentalist and singer who has performed with artists ranging from Sierra Hull and Mandolin Orange to the North Carolina Symphony. He now resides in Floyd, VA where he serves as Director of the Handmade Music School and also tours with the group Bill and the Belles. Singing and performing on mandolin and fiddle with his wife Ashlee Watkins as the New Macedon Rangers, Andrew is a regular performer for Friday Night Jamborees at the Floyd Country Store. Andrew has won numerous blue ribbons from fiddlers’ conventions around the Southeast for his old-time fiddling and in 2015 was named the Bluegrass Mandolin Champion of Australia. He holds a Masters Degree in Double Bass Performance from Yale University.
David Cannadaybluegrass banjo, bluegrass guitar, mandolin
David started teaching at 15 years old. He has worked in music stores and teaching studios ever since. David is currently teaching on Thursdays and accepting students for bluegrass banjo, guitar, mandolin, lap dulcimer & autoharp.
Seph Custerguitar, mandolin, dobro, bass, ukelele
Seph learned guitar at age 12 from The Handmade Music School’s very own David Cannaday. He took that knowledge and applied it to banjo and mandolin in his teenage years, and has been teaching lessons and playing with various bands since. Seph released a solo album through Windfall Studios in 2016, and has played a number of high profile shows with The Papa Tom Band since, averaging 120+ performances a year. With almost a decade of experience in teaching, playing, and repairing instruments, Seph is well versed in music theory and practical application.
Jesse Smathersmandolin, guitar
Currently performing on mandolin and singing lead and tenor vocals with the Lonesome River Band, Jesse Smathers is an accomplished mandolinist, guitarist, and singer from Eden, North Carolina. Heavily influenced by the music that runs in his family, Jesse has found inspiration and takes pride in his musical family lineage. His grandfather, Harold Smathers, and grand uncle, Luke Smathers, recorded for June Appal and were awarded the North Carolina Folk Heritage Award in 1993 for their contributions to North Carolina Folk Music with the Luke Smathers String Band. In 2009, Jesse won the guitar championship of the Virginia Folk Music Association. He also has won at the Charlie Poole Festival and placed 3rd in guitar at The Old Time Fiddlers Convention in Galax. Jesse began his career as a touring musician with the James King Band in 2010, playing mandolin and singing tenor and high baritone, and later rejoined the band performing guitar and vocals. In 2013, High Voltage, featuring Jesse as guitarist and lead vocalist, won first place in the bluegrass band category at the Galax Old Time Fiddlerʼs Convention. Jesse joined Nothinʼ Fancy and was also inducted into the music fraternity Phi Mu Alpha in 2014. The Lonesome River Band welcomed him to the group as a mandolin player and lead and tenor vocalist in 2015 and Jesse won the 2017 IBMA Momentum Award for Vocalist of the year. He now resides in Floyd, Virginia.
Bill Adamsdobro, fingerstyle guitar
Bill has been playing his instruments in a variety of styles for many years – playing steel guitar for Western Swing and classic Nashville country bands and playing Dobro and rhythm guitar in many local bluegrass bands. At the present time he plays Dobro with the Java Brothers from Radford , Va. He also plays a variety of finger-style guitar music which is heavily influenced by Merle Travis, Chet Atkins , and Doc Watson. Before retiring into the land of music , Bill was an elementary school teacher in Floyd County for twenty years.
Abe first discovered acoustic music at The Floyd Country Store as a teenager. He learned to play from local musicians Bernie Coveney and Mike Mitchell and has gone on to perform and record with many bands and groups since. He currently plays with the folk/bluegrass group Amber Collins & Branch House Pavilion, as well as Lynchburg based acoustic band Good Buddy.