December 6 Happy Birthday John Gillis

Happy Birthday John Gillis born, December 6, 1966 In the early 1990s formed, the band Gillis Brothers with his brother. They fronted the band which created quite a stir in the bluegrass music community. Their music was not really bluegrass, nor was it “old time.” It might be called “Southern Appalachian Mountain Music,” along the lines of what Carter and Ralph Stanley did. More than a few people comment that the Gillis Brothers were “more Stanley Brothers than the Stanley Brothers.”
The makeup of the band: Larry plays banjo and strong cross-picking on the guitar (John Shuffler style), John does rhythm and lead guitar playing, both John and Larry lead singing, Owen Saunders plays fiddle, and Andy Dye’s solid bass playing holds all together.
One of their most well known songs was recorded in 1995 and was the titled song for the album “Heart & Soul” on Rebel records, which became a favorite to all hard driving Bluegrass fans. It was shortly after this The Gillis Brothers decided to take a break and raise families down in Soperton, Georgia.

About the author

I enjoy researching Bluegrass, Bluegrass Gospel, and Country birthdays, anniversaries and interesting trivia dates. I am a piano/organ performance major who has taught privately and served as church accompanist since 1968 in North Carolina and Central Kentucky. Although classically trained, I appreciate all genres of music. My mother, who was also a church musician and taught public school music grades K-12, knew that Bluegrass music was the purest American music. She always introduced her students to this fine genre and began my musical studies with her at age 2. Bach to Berachah Valley, Mozart to Jimmy Martin, Sibelius to Stanley Brothers, the list goes on, I hope you find some moments of enjoyment and learn a few interesting facts along the way.
I am thankful for the many resources we have at our fingertips including Google. FaceBook and BluegrassBios by Wayne Rice. It was he who inspired me to tackle the task of trying to pass on knowledge about Bluegrass music. Thanks Wayne~!
Lou Ellen Wilkie

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