and Back Roads

December 4, 1999

This was a great evening of true ensemble bluegrass, with a program that incorporated original compositions with revered standards.

BUDDY MERRIAM, who was born in Hartford, CT on October 7, 1952, has played the mandolin and guitar professionally for over 20 years. In 1975 he joined The Sykes Boys and was a member for 6 years, during which time they traveled extensively and recorded their highly acclaimed Dixie Bound. In 1979, they placed first in the Long Island Bluegrass Contest. Buddy has appeared on television and radio, and has added his talents to many record albums by other artists including 1993's popular Follow My Lead CD by the Fox Family. He has performed in such places as Lincoln Center in New York City and was a member of the Berkshire Mountains Bluegrass Festival house band.

While keeping a firm foundation in traditional bluegrass music, Buddy has worked hard to develop an original mandolin style. He is a fine songwriter and is proud to have produced his first book of original mandolin music, which has been published by True Vine Publications.

Buddy is heavily influenced by the friendship and music direction of the Father of Bluegrass Music, Bill Monroe, and has appeared on stage with him several times. Buddy met Bill Monroe at the first Berkshire Mountains Bluegrass Festival in 1976 and was hooked on the drive and sincerity of the music.

The Back Roads portion of the team currently consists of fiddler Ron Feinberg, stand-up bassist Frank Camiola and newest member Chris Maloy singing lead and playing guitar.