Cast List and Short Bios for Women of Old-Time Music
By Holly Hobbs
Editor’s note: An on-line search of a number of names below may take you to performances by them.
Amos, Liz (Springfield, Missouri) Competitive fiddler in southern Missouri trained by the late great fiddler Bob Holt.
Bilyeu, Mark (Ozark, Missouri) Lead singer and songwriter of the band Big Smith as well as a solo act.
Bowen, Judy Domeny (Springfield, Missouri) Multi-instrumentalist and oral history enthusiast, Bowen is also a teacher and performs storytelling songs throughout Missouri.
Brandt, Idabell (Rosebud, Missouri) Banjo player and folk historian who performs regionally with her musician husband.
Bullard, Linnie (Pineville, Missouri) Folksinger recorded by Vance Randolph and included in his four-volume Ozark Folksongs anthology.
Big Smith (Springfield, Missouri) Band of five cousins that recorded and toured extensively throughout the band’s history (1996-2012) and incorporated old-time, bluegrass, and early country influences as well as regional culture into their songwriting and repertoire. They are also the subject of the film HOMEMADE HILLBILLY JAM (2005), directed by Rick Minnich.
Carter, Lois Haworth (Springfield, Missouri) Pianist and member of the band The Sweet Nothings along with Virginia Snyder.
Cobb, Vickie Layton (Galena, Missouri) Missouri writer and cultural historian, author of Ozark Pioneers (2001).
Davis, Edna Mae (Ava, Missouri) Celebrated jig dancer, cultural historian, and traditional dance performer and teacher in southern Missouri.
Ethridge, Retha (Springfield, Missouri) Guitarist and member of the band The Sweet Nothings along with Virginia Snyder
Frazier, Carol (Gainesville, Missouri) Guitarist and folksinger based in Gainesville who performs at music festivals and performs some of the repertoire of her grandmother, the songwriter Verna Gardner.
The Hammer Sisters (Neosho, Missouri) Ruth Hawkins and Lillian Baker, sisters, perform together in the group the Hammer Sisters, performing mostly on fiddle and guitar and specializing in regional old-time songs.
Henderson, Betty Craker (Monett, Missouri) Author, cultural historian, singer and guitarist specializing in regional old-time repertoire.
Hensley, Violet (Yellville, Arkansas) Competitive fiddler and fiddle maker who has been the subject of multiple documentation projects and has toured extensively, often seconded on guitar by her daughter, Sandra Flagg.
Hoagland, Rachel (Springfield, Missouri) Young and talented female fiddler who helped lead the youth renaissance of old-time fiddling in southern Missouri.
Holt, Bob (Ava, Missouri) Celebrated and much-loved competitive fiddler who performed, recorded and taught extensively throughout the region and beyond.
Johnson, Vesta (Kirkwood, Missouri) North Missouri-style competitive fiddler who has performed extensively, including at the Old Town School of Folk Music in Chicago in 2010 and selected as the 2013 Individual Artist by the Missouri Arts Council.
Johnston, Don (Springfield, Missouri) Respected fiddler from Golden City, Missouri, who performs with numerous groups, including The Sweet Nothings, featuring folksinger Virginia Snyder.
Kinnaird, Cinderella (Willow Springs, Missouri) Missouri folksinger and oral historian who performed at the National Folk Festival.
Lansford, Kim and Jim (Galena, Missouri) Kim (guitar, vocals, piano) and Jim (fiddle, guitar, banjo, mandolin, vocals) are recording artists and musical historians with multiple albums and an extensive touring schedule.
Long, Violet (Mountain Grove, Missouri) Folksinger and musical historian seconded on guitar by her son, Vern Long, Jr.
Mansfield Jamboree (Mansfield, Missouri) An old-time, bluegrass, and early country play party held periodically throughout the year.
McCann, Gordon (Springfield, Missouri) Music and local culture historian and traditional American fiddle tune expert, McCann is also a guitarist and in-demand “second” (a musician who accompanies a lead instrument, like fiddle, on a secondary instrument, like guitar).
McClurg Jam Session (McClurg, Missouri) Recurrent old-time jam session held at the old general store in McClurg.
McCord, May K. (Springfield, Missouri) Folksinger recorded by Vance Randolph and included in his four-volume Ozark Folksongs anthology who became a well-known performer and storyteller throughout Missouri and on local radio.
Peacock, Garnett (Theodosia, Missouri) Talented banjo player, musical contributor to the album “Traditional Fiddle Music of the Ozarks: Down in the Border Counties, Vol. 3” released in the North American Tradition Series, wife of old-time musician Gordon Peacock, also featured on the same release.
Pearson, Cathy and Jody (Ava, Missouri) Relatives of Edna Mae Davis and members of the celebrated old-time jig dancing group, The Ava Old-Time Dancers.
Pendergraft, Neoma (Willard, Missouri) Fiddler and musical historian specializing in regional old-time song repertoire.
Snyder, Virginia (Springfield, Missouri) Guitarist, folksinger, teacher, oral historian and founder of the Snyder Music Park in Springfield.
The Sweet Nothings (Springfield, Missouri) Springfield, Missouri-based old-time and early country band led by Virginia Snyder featuring Missouri fiddler Don Johnston.
Thomas, Linda (Springfield, Missouri) Recording artist, elementary-school music teacher, and multi-instrumentalist who specializes in hammer dulcimer performance along with her musical partner, Dan DeLancey.
Whittaker, Judy Jane (Anderson, Missouri) Folksinger recorded by Vance Randolph and included in his four-volume Ozark Folksongs anthology.