27 August 2014

Phill Morley, British bluegrass pioneer

Thanks to the Prescription Bluegrass Blog for making the BIB aware of this morning's news from the British Bluegrass Music Association (BBMA) of the death of Phill Morley (photo as on the PBB), founder member of the BBMA, and founder in the 1970s of the British Bluegrass & Old Time Music Newsletter, the forerunner of today’s British Bluegrass News. The full text of the BBMA announcement can be read here. Please note the words 'In BBN No 70 [...] we hope to publish an appreciation of Phill’s many contributions to the British bluegrass scene.'

The BIB hopes that the work of chronicling the pioneers of bluegrass - and not only in Britain - will be stimulated as a result. This is not just a matter of who wins an EBMA European Bluegrass Pioneer award; it's a duty that falls on the bluegrass 'community' in each country, whatever use may be made of the information. Dave Morriss's 'British Bluegrass Veterans' Facebook page is an invaluable source, especially for its photo archive, and we're glad to see that Dave has begun a written history of traditional bluegrass in the UK. The time for action is now, when the people who can put names and dates to those photos are still around.

Update 9 Sept.: See also this article on Phill Morley by Richard Thompson on Bluegrass Today.

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