Congratulations on a job well done to Meghan Bryant, CCMMS’s first Charlie Whitaker Memorial apprentice, and her mentor, Jesse Wells! Meghan is from Floyd County and is a sophomore in high school. She first learned fiddle from Jesse’s father, Jamie, and has been a “regular” at the music school each year along with her sister, who plays banjo. In 2015, Meghan also served as a teaching assistant for the first time. We appreciate her and Jesse generously passing on the music.
“I think the Charlie Whitaker Memorial Apprenticeship is a wonderful opportunity for anyone interested in learning more on their instrument. I’m so thankful to Cowan Creek Mountain Music School for being so generous in giving this apprenticeship and making it possible for someone to study music from a master and learn how to carry on the old time music tradition.
I have learned so many things in this year from Jesse. I’ve learned fiddle tunes from Doc Roberts, Kenny Baker, Buddy Thomas, George Lee Hawkins, John Morgan Salyer, and many other great fiddlers. I’ve also learned a lot about other styles, like fiddling in bluegrass, fiddling in country music, playing fiddle in a band, and some music theory. I think this apprenticeship has helped me grow not only as an old time fiddler, but all around as a musician.
I would definitely encourage anyone interested in learning and preserving old time mountain music to attend Cowan Creek Mountain Music School and apply for this apprenticeship. Cowan Creek is a wonderful program and I’ve honestly never been anywhere with such a great atmosphere and so many helpful, encouraging people. It’s definitely one of my favorite weeks of the year.“ ~Meghan Bryant, Charlie Whitaker Memorial Apprentice