By Jesse Wood
April 10, 2014. The Linville Falls Winery hosts world-class thumbpickers Wayne Henderson and Clay Lunsford at a CD release party on Saturday, April 12, from 3 to 6 p.m. The event is free to attend.
Henderson and Lunsford recently recorded an album, Thumb to Thumb: The Museum Recordings, in Henderson’s workshop in Rugby, Va.
Henderson is a celebrated luthier and fine guitar picker, who has developed is own hybrid picking style by picking down with the thumb like a flat pick and up with his fingers on the same string.
“That came about when I was a real young kid first learning to play. I started using a pick because my influence E.C. Ball, a fellow who lived in the community, told me I should use a thumbpick because that’s the way he plays and all the rest of the guitar players I knew that were famous: Merle Travis, Chet Atkins and Maybelle Carter. I thought he was right and that’s the way you were supposed to do it,” Henderson said.
Henderson, however, grew up playing old-time fiddle music with his father and found it difficult to perform old-time fiddle tunes in the traditional thumb picking style and had to develop his unusual style.
“That’s the way it happened, it turned out,” Henderson said.
Lunsford has been playing in the style of Chet Atkins and Merle Travis for 50 years. While Lunsford is a “straight-up thumb picker who plays in the style” of legends Chet Atkins and Jerry Reed, Henderson said that Lunsford also has an unusual style because he adds the roll of a banjo player – which makes sense because he plays the banjo, too. Lunford is also a relative of Bascom Lamar Lunsford, who was born in Madison County and recorded thousands of songs for the Archive of American Music at the Library of Congress.
Linville Falls Winery is located at 9557 Linville Falls Highway in Newland. For more information, click here or call 828-765-1400.
About Linville Falls Winery
Family owned and operated, Linville Falls Winery is the culmination of a life-long passion for wine by owner, Jack Wiseman. Wiseman has dreamed of growing grapes and opening a winery for more than 25 years, and now he and his family are pioneering a new High Country wine in Linville. Nestled in the lower end of Avery County near the Blue Ridge Parkway is a state of the art tasting room on a 40 acre farm with its staple grapes Riesling and Cabernet Sauvignon, blueberries and raspberries. The winery is perfectly situated at 3200 feet with warm days, cool nights and minerally balanced soil. This magical combination of high elevation and microclimate terra produces a wine unique to the region with complex flavors creating award winning wines.