Monday, June 12, 2006

Amy Orlomoski's BG bio

Sometimes, it can be fun to see how other folks came to listen to and appreciate the Bluegrass music. In several other posts, you've read the Bluegrass stories of WHUS BG show alumni, Marcel Huguenin and Kim Cyr, as well as our current BG personnel, show producer Myrna Riquier as well as "new kids" Jim Beaver & Marti Harmon. Now, it's my turn:

My first exposure to Bluegrass came through the records my brother, Dave, was playing in the mid-1970s. Among his favorites was an album released in the mid-1960s or so by a Rhode Island-based group: Fred Pike, Bill Rawlings, and the Twin River Boys. That group included a young mandolin player who would go on to greater fame in the Country Gentlemen -- Jimmy Gaudreau. Dave also was a big fan of the Country Gents, so, naturally, I listened to them a lot, too. In the 1980s, when I was still a kid, I added a young Bluegrass group to my limited list of favorites, the Johnson Mountain Boys. Many times, I couldn't understand any of the lyrics they were singing, but I sure liked their music.

As an undergrad at Eastern CT State University, I started a Bluegrass radio show called Simply Bluegrass. I stayed with that show for several years after graduating from ECSU, and was on the air there for a total of more than eight years.

After my "retirement" from Bluegrass radio in the late 1990s, my exposure to the music became more limited. I would go to an occasional festival (most likely one where my brother's band, Bear Bridge, was playing) and maybe buy one or two Bluegrass CDs a year, but that was about it. One day, a former listener of Simply Bluegrass called me to ask if I might be interested in helping out the Bluegrass radio show at WHUS. Myrna Riquier, our BG Cafe show producer, was that caller. Don't let anyone tell you anything different: being on the radio is fun! After all, where else can you sit in a little room, play all different types of Bluegrass (some you may enjoy much more than others), and talk to folks about this music?

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