Feb. 17, 2023

Episode 21 Bruce Molsky Interview

Episode 21 Bruce Molsky Interview

In this episode of Music Trails we meet Grammy nominated Fiddle, Banjo, Guitar, Singer, Songwriter Bruce Molsky. Bruce talks about his upcoming participation in the Folk Alliance International, as well as his partial tour schedule for 2023. Bruce shares his musical journey  from being introduced to music at an early age, to picking up the fiddle and banjo while an engineering student at Cornell, his day in the mountains of North Carolina with the great fiddle player Tommy Jarrell, to his collaboration with musicians from all over the world playing a  variety of genres but staying close to his Old Time Music roots. Hear Bruce play live a Music Trails first. 

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Bruce Molsky

American fiddler, banjo player, guitarist, singer, songwriter

"Bruce Molsky is one of those great players who 'gets it': has all the links to the past but is happy not to be chained to it" — Mark Knopfler

"The effortlessness and ease with which Bruce plays and sings has always been something I've deeply admired. It is a rarity to hear music that lacks ego and puts soulfulness and a respect for tradition at the forefront. Bruce is simply one of the greatest musicians there is, period." — Sarah Jarosz

“After a long career that stands as a fiddle masterclass, comes a beautiful eclectic album of song and six-string wizardry, a rare treat indeed.” — John Paul Jones

"Love what you and the band have done with the song Bruce [Between the Wars]" — Billy Bragg

"Molsky is easily one of the nation's most talented fiddlers...he transports you ... geographically, historically, and most of all emotionally" — Mother Jones

"It is no exaggeration to say that Bruce Molsky is one of the greatest American fiddlers of all time. His playing is mesmerizing and transporting, and best experienced live" —WBUR (Boston NPR)

"An absolute master" —No Depression

"An incredible power of history and tradition in his vocal" — Linda Ronstadt

"One of the world's premier Appalachian-style fiddlers" — Bloomberg News

"A mystical awareness of how to bring out the new in something that is old" — Mark O'Connor


Grammy-nominated, described as “an absolute master” (No Depression), Molsky transports audiences to another time and place, with his authentic and personal interpretations of rarities from the Southern Appalachian songbook and other musical traditions from around the globe. Best known for his work on the fiddle, Bruce’s banjo, guitar and his distinctive, powerful vocals also resonate with listeners. His combination of technical virtuosity and relaxed conversational wit makes a concert hall feel like an intimate front porch gathering.

Bruce's take on tradition has landed him in collaborations with some of the world's most highly respected players from roots to rock. He is a special guest on legend rocker Mark Knopfler’s recent CD, “Tracker.” His 1865 Songs of Hope & Home with Anonymous 4, was on Billboard’s top 10 for weeks. Along with Andy Irvine & Donal Lunny, Bruce is a founding member of the supergroup Mozaik, with three recordings. You can see Bruce on the BBC TV “Transatlantic Sessions” with Aly Bain and Jerry Douglas, and on “David Holt’s State of Music” on PBS. He stays active touring and recording with longtime collaborators Darol Anger, Tony Trischka and Mountain Drifters’ Allison de Groot.

February 2022 marked the long-anticipated release of Bruce’s solo guitar CD: “Everywhere You Go,” a coming-together of new interpretations and arrangements of a wide swath of styles.

Bruce holds the title of “Visiting Scholar in the American Roots Music Program” at Berklee College of Music, where he is the go-to guy for the next generation of roots musicians.

“Performing and teaching traditional music are the biggest things in my world. For me, being a musician isn’t a standalone thing; it informs everything I do in my life. It’s always been about being creative and being a part of something much bigger than myself, a link in the musical chain and part of the community of people who play it and love it.” —