Writer biographies

 

My name is Aaron Keith Harris, editor of LRR.

Our mission here is to give good writers a chance to write about music in an honest, entertaining and enlightening way.

 

LRR contributing writers:

Larry Stephens was born and raised a few miles down the road from Bean Blossom, Indiana, home of Bill Monroe’s legendary bluegrass festival.
A descendant of several of the first settlers of this part of the state, I grew up in the country, attended a small school (graduating class of twenty-three people) and graduated from Indiana University. Through the years I’ve had several careers: policeman, truck driver, insurance adjuster. In 1985 I started my third tour of duty as an Indiana University employee – and I’m still there as Director of Risk Management.
Music has always been an important part of my life. I still bear the emotional scars of being an inept tuba player in my high school band (thirteen strong). I started learning guitar on an archtop f-hole guitar my dad had. Once he figured out I would never be a lead guitarist, Dad bought me a bass and what followed is now almost legendary (stressing the “almost”). At seventeen, I was playing and singing in the Starlighters with my dad and some of his friends, playing local clubs and VFW lodges. We played a mix of country and country-rock (like Credence Clearwater Revival).
As the years flew by I continued to write songs, played country and Southern Gospel and, several years ago, started playing bluegrass and added an upright bass or two to my instrumental collection. I’ve played – and play – in several local bluegrass bands and in my church praise team.
I like many kinds of music. A touch of classical, a little blues and jazz, whatever you want to call what Celtic Woman does, but most of my listening time is pre-Beatles rock ‘n’ roll, Southern Gospel, real country (Faron Young, Lefty Frizzell) and bluegrass. I like Grisman and Baldassari but I’m a traditionalist at heart.
My wife and I have five great kids and three fabulous grandkids. I’m a deacon in my church. I love hunting and fishing, hiking, horses, camping, ATVs and genealogy.

 

Donald Teplyske was born in a small cabin in the hills of West Virginia….

Not really, but….

Adopted at birth, I spent my earliest years on a ramshackle farm on the North Saskatchewan River flats south of Duffield, Alberta, the son of—I’m told—a not very competent cattle rustler. As one of more than a dozen kids spread across three families living on the property, a ready appreciation for the freedom of the fields and woods was established.

While a mightily needed matrimonial realignment on the part of my parents necessitated a move to the less quaint environs of the big city (as well as a name change,) my love for rural life- as long as my hands don’t get too dirty- and country-influenced music (Glen Campbell, Clarence Carter, Tom T. Hall, and Murray McLauchlan) was set.

After high school (The Who, the Undertones, Rachel Sweet, and Bruce Springsteen) and university (The Blasters, Katrina & the Waves, Lone Justice, and Marty Stuart), and stops in increasingly smaller towns, my wife and I settled in central Alberta, and love for bluegrass and roots music flourished.

I listen to a wide variety of music, and the albums most recently played in the sunburst Escape reveal my tastes: The Jerry Cans, Inuusiq/Life; Lucinda Williams, Happy Woman Blues; Dale Ann Bradley, Send the Angels; Ann Vriend, For the People in the Mean Time; The Monkees, Good Times!; and Three Dog Night, Hard Labor.

I regularly contributed to Bluegrass Now, and wrote on roots music for the Red Deer Advocate newspaper and other publications for more than a decade while also helping found and book concerts for the Waskasoo Bluegrass Music Society.

Highlights of my writing career—such as it is—include crafting the notes for James Reams & the Barnstormer’s One Foot in the Honky Tonk, having a Kieran Kane coffeehouse performance review published in No Depression, maintaining a roots music column in the area daily for a dozen years, and being called out by multiple publicists, artists, and producers over negative reviews.

When not procrastinating from important tasks, I’m an elementary school principal residing in Westerose, Alberta with my spouse and two distinctly personable cats, Bailey II and Maizee. We enjoy traveling the back roads of our province, and I have been known to write a yarn or few.

 

 

7 comments

  1. I just finished reading the review of Carolina Roads lasted release by Maria Morgan Davis. I really appreciate the very complimentary comments about the two songs, Can’t You Hear The Mountains Calling and Which Way To Go. I would like to send you a CD with more of my orginal material, not for review but just for you to hear. Of course, any comments would certainly be appreciated. Thanks again.
    If you would send me a mailing address, I will a CD out to you……………………………….Jerry Williamson

  2. hey all…
    thanks for posting the review of my band’s latest, “Last Good Kiss” by Last Train Home. really appreciate the attention and (of course) the high praise. Nice to be found worthy!
    thanks maria….
    Eric
    mail@lasttrainhome.com
    (send me a note and i’ll mail you some more of my stuff… and from my label, Red Beet Records… new CDs by Peter Cooper and Fayssoux that i’ve released are spectacular!)

  3. Hey there. Enjoyed your site. I write a physician bluegrass fiction weblog. I hope to finish my novel in 2009 and would love for you guys to review it.

    Dr. Tom Bibey

    drtombibey.wordpress.com

  4. Wow this may be strange but I just stumbled on your great site I was stalking Donald Teplyske. He just wrote the liner notes of out new CD, “One Foot In The Honky Tonk” very nice notes. I won’t give out any more info on the album. It should be out in April.

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