FRC115– Ray’s Dream- Ray Alden and Many Friends $15 per disc
Just one person’s words aren’t enough to describe Ray Alden’s contribution to old-time music. About everywhere you go, from the Blue Ridge of North Carolina and Virginia and in every direction, you’ll meet musicians who have been touched in some way by Ray’s love of mountain music and his lifetime of devotion to it. His own field recordings of older generation players and younger, more “modern” players illustrate his belief that folk music is there for everyone, a language and expression that anyone can grab on to. Ray was a great banjo player, a prominent music collector, a beloved member of the old-time music community. And above it all, he loved just sharing music － Ray wanted everyone to be moved by the magic he heard in the old tunes.
It was Ray’s wish that there be a document of his music that spanned time and place. So here’s a collection of music featuring Ray with his distinctive, percussive, wonderful banjo style. The tunes were played at different times, with different folks and in different settings, but together they paint a single big picture of someone a bit larger than life. Ray’s curiosity and enthusiasm seemed limitless; he turned his passion for music into opportunities to connect with people and to celebrate life. Listen to the music on this CD and you’re bound to do the same! – Bruce Molsky
The Connector: Ray Alden by Paul Brown, Old Time Herald, Dec. 2009
Article: Excerpts from the November 2003 Banjo Newsletter interview with Ray Alden