A retired brakeman from Manchester, Tennessee, Roy Harper has been performing old-time country music for more than fifty years.
Roy has devoted his life to continuing the traditions of the style of country music he grew up listening to. Much of the inspiration for
his songs comes from the many years he spent working on the railroad. Compared by his fans to Jimmy Rogers, Roy has developed
quite a following among people who find this style of music preferable to modern “country” music. “County music gradually got
citified, and I stayed the same.”
Johnny and Roy at Music Festival at Fall Creek Falls,
Tennessee in October 2003.
Just one of Johnny's great cds. If you would
like to purchase some of his music, contact
Johnny through his website, by clicking the
Dobro and lap steel
Famous as a Nashville session musician and composer
of gorgeous melodies, Johnny Bellar is a virtuoso
player of both the resophonic guitar (an acoustic
instrument played with a metal slide invented in the
1920's and popularly known as the Dobro) and the lap
steel guitar (an electric adaptation of the resophonic).
He is a regular on the Nashville Now television
program and on the Grand Ole Opry. Born and raised
outside of Nashville, Johnny was introduced to music
at an early age. He began playing the guitar at age 14
and the resophonic a year later. After graduation from
high school, Johnny began playing with the legendary
Stoneman Family in 1974 and continued touring with
them until 1984. While performing with the
Stonemans, Johnny appeared on such shows as Hee
Haw, the Ralph Emery Show and the Tommy Hunter
Show. After leaving the Stoneman family, Johnny
performed for three years with the bluegrass gospel
group, the New Tradition. In 1987 Johnny decided to
concentrate on his own music and worked his way
into the Nashville studio scene. Since then, he has
performed at Opryland USA and with Wilma Lee
Cooper on the Grand Ole Opry and throughout the
|Roy Harper, an Old Time Country Music Hall of Famer,
and Johnny Bellar, performing at the
Center For Southern Folklore Music Heritage Festival 2004.
Johnny Bellar was inducted to the Old Time Country Music
Hall of Fame in
My friend, Johnny Bellar
FROM: The Masters of the Steel String Guitar
national tour, showcasing American guitar music:.
The four main guitar artists on the album are
Johnny Bellar, John Cephas, Wayne Henderson,
and Eddie Pennington. They are supported by
Linda and David Lay (vocals and rhythm guitar)
and Phil Wiggins (harmonica). Each one
represents different playing techniques and song
styles, from Appalachian fiddle tunes to folk
standards such as "John Henry," ethereal lap steel
originals, and chain gang blues.
True feeling flows from the performances, all in
crystal clear sound quality. Eddie Pennington
injects hilarity into "Lost John" with the lyrics
Well I hated goin down to lost John's house, and
I'll tell you the reason why / He blowed his nose
in the corn bread and called it raisin pie." John
Cephas bemoans the convict's lot on Skip James'
"Prison Blues," and Johnny Bellar soars with the
instrumental "Northern Lights."
For a historical addition to a roots music
collection, an introduction to guitar picking styles,
or just a knee-slappin' good time, don't pass up
Masters of the Steel String Guitar. - Rob Seiden
Double click on any image to enlarge it.
|New fans in Memphis - Rick & Linda Rahija - loved Johnny's
playing and Soriana's vocal stylings at The Cafe Francisco.