July 30 HAPPY BIRTHDAY Andy Leftwich

HAPPY BIRTHDAY Andy Leftwich born, July 30, 1981, the youngest member of Kentucky Thunder. Andy started playing the fiddle at the age of six, learning first from his father. In 1997, Andy started playing professionally, joining Valerie Smith and her band, Liberty Pike, as the lead mandolin player. In February of 2000, one of Andy’s greatest musical heroes, Ricky Skaggs, was in need of a second fiddler. Andy feels very blessed to work with a Christian band-leader like Skaggs in a healthy Christian environment — “God’s been opening up so many doors for me since I started playing with Ricky…I am blessed to have this job to glorify God with.”

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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