Pick Your Community: | Hopkins | Muhlenberg | Daviess | Christian | Henderson | Lakes | McCracken | Webster
Davis Motor Sales banner ad
Impressions pre-reset: 420826 Clicks pre-reset: 872

Drakesboro Celebrates Local Guitar Talent on Mose Rager Day

mose 1DRAKESBORO, Ky. (4/15/13) – Mention Mose Rager to any guitar thumbpicker worth his weight, and you'll likely get a smile and an acknowledgement that this obscure guitar genius created a whole new sound that lives on today.
 
Saturday, April 13th, 2013, local friends and fans, pickers from several states, and those who just love his totally unique style and sound, joined in to celebrate Mose Rager Day at the Drakesboro City Hall.
 
The man who created his own style of guitar thumb picking, went on to influence the likes of Merle Travis, Chet Atkins, along with literally thousands of others. He was honored with a full day of thumb picking and story sharing about a guitar genius everyone seemed to love.
 
Mary Rainwater, a former neighbor of Rager, told Surfky News that "Mose lived across the street from our family when I was growing up. They were playing all the time, but I was little then, and Momma wouldn't let me go out of our yard. But I do remember there were always plenty of people over there, and they were always playing. It was wonderful to hear."

A monument to Rager sits across from the town courthouse, just a couple of miles from the TVA Paradise plant where Rager once worked at one of his many occupations.
 
One concert goer, Neil Litton, recalled that a man pulled up while Mose was walking down the street. The man asked Mose if he knew where Mose Rager lived. He asked the man what exactly he wanted to see Mose Rager for. 'Well, I just like his pickin', and I wanted to meet him,' the man said. Turns out that man worked for Standard Oil up in Indiana. Mose got that job with Standard Oil with his, guitar, and got a job with TVA with his guitar. He also ran the Drakesboro theatre for a while."

Another fan added that the most simple way to explain the Mose Rager sound is that "you don't need any one to back you up. You just play the melody and then on the offbeats you play your own bass line. It just creates a syncopation back and forth beat that is just beyond any other sound. I've played rock, country, every kind of music and there is nothing else like the Mose Rager sound."
 
Everyone agrees that Mose house was the place to be for guitar picking. But one reason there are few recordings of Mose, according to several who knew him, was the fact he was shy when it came to touring or recording.
 
One fan stated that, "He got lots of offers to tour with people like Grandpa Jones and others, but he was a home body, and a bit shy on stage. They got him to record once at Mach One Studio in Central City, and he was just fine practicing before recording. But the minute that "On Air" light went on, he would almost freeze up. Couldn't play a note. They finally distracted him while someone unscrewed the "On Air" light bulb. Then he played great. I think we all just wish there were more Mose recordings."
 
One younger session musician from Dawson Springs said "this whole area has such a rich history of great musicians. Merle Travis, the Everly Brothers, Mose, John Prine's family and Bill Monroe just down the road in Ohio County. It must be in the water. It's something. I have one of Mose' guitars right here. One of his grandkids was going to take it to Alaska, and I asked if I could have it, because I never knew Mose but I'm very close with his family. Surprisingly they agreed to let me have it. You can feel Mose coming through the guitar sometimes, you really can."
 
The Mose sound is definitely gaining a new generation of followers. One 12-year-old fan from Vincennes, asked for permission to play the Mose Rager guitar, as it leaned against the monument planted here to honor the legendary picker.
 
"This one's for you, Mose." the young boy said.
 
He then sang and played an old Mose Rager favorite, "I am a Pilgrim". This was a fitting song to dedicate to a true pilgrim in exploring and creating a whole new style and sound still inspiring those from 2 to 92.
 
You can view the original performance of this song by Mose himself on the video below.
 

Paul McRee
SurfKY News
Photos by Marilyn Kirtley

© Copyright 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story by using one of the social media links below.

Posted on 2/2/14
2/6/2014 - posted
3/13 - 16
Started 11/8/2013
Started 11/8/2013
button coupons

Stock Report

1 DOW 17,810.06
+91.06 (0.51%)    
2 S&P 2,063.50
+10.75 (0.52%)    
3 NASDAQ 4,712.97
+11.10 (0.24%)    
2/6/2014 - posted
3/13 - 16
Started 11/8/2013
Started 11/8/2013
2/6/2014 - posted
3/13 - 16
Started 11/8/2013
Started 11/8/2013
button classifieds
2/6/2014 - posted
3/13 - 16
Started 11/8/2013
Started 11/8/2013

Most Read This Week

November 21, 2014 5642

Man Accused of Assaulting Coach During Basketball…

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Rita Dukes Smith, SurfKY News Director
November 18, 2014 5196

Couple Charged for Concealing Food in Infant Car…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Madisonville Police Department
November 17, 2014 4668

Police Charge Woman for Drug Possession After…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Madisonville Police Department
November 17, 2014 3965

Bremen Woman Ejected From Vehicle During Kentucky…

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Trooper S.C. Recke
November 19, 2014 3572

Two Killed When Vehicle Becomes Airborne, Strikes…

in Local (Owensboro) Top News by Daviess County Sheriff's Office
November 21, 2014 3403

Crashing Dump Trucks in Work Zone Cause Pennyrile…

in Top News For All Sites Touching Hopkins by Trooper Stu Recke
November 18, 2014 3317

Area Talent to Film Music Video at Merle Travis…

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Paul McRee, SurfKY News
November 19, 2014 3285

Is Bankruptcy Your Best Option?

in General News For All Sites by SurfKY News
November 22, 2014 3128

One Injured in Two Vehicle Collion in Greenville

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Miria Thomas
November 19, 2014 3091

Three Injured in Two-Vehicle Collision on South…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Gwen Smith

Stories Trending Today

November 22, 2014 3128

One Injured in Two Vehicle Collion in Greenville

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Miria Thomas
November 21, 2014 1711

KSP Announces 'Cram the Cruiser' to Feed the…

in Top News For All Sites Touching Hopkins by Stu Recke
November 22, 2014 1706

Greenville Representatives Taking Part in Austin,…

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Paul McRee, SurfKY News
November 22, 2014 1623

SAR Planning 'Triple' Revolutionary War Patriot…

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Geoff Baggett
November 21, 2014 1623

Kentucky Employers to Save About $112 million

in General News For All Sites by Cathy Lindsey
November 22, 2014 1548

Pennyrile Dulcimer Players Demonstrate Unique…

in Top News For All Sites by Ron Sanders
November 22, 2014 1541

Prevent Fires at Home This Winter

in General News For All Sites by SurfKY News
November 22, 2014 1514

Carve a Turkey Like a Pro

in General News For All Sites by SurfKY News
November 22, 2014 1435

Happenings and Meetings - Hopkins County

in Hopkins News by Amber Averitt, SurfKY News
November 22, 2014 1390

P'Pool Among Top Performing Child Support…

in Hopkins News by Cabinet for Health and Family Services

SurfKY News Group, Inc.
Corporate Office & Studio
1125 Nebo Rd.  •  Madisonville, KY 42431
270.452.2727 (phone)
  •  270.452.2249 (fax)


Contact a member of our staff: www.surfky.com/contact
Copyright © 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc.  •  Terms of Use  •  Site Map

social fbsocial twsocial yt
social gpsocial flrsocial rss