Hob Thrasher

by Michael McNevin

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about

Met Hob in the Phoenix airport, Thanksgiving weekend. My Dad Jack and I were waiting on a plane. Hob walked by with his family, his grandson was carrying his fiddle for him. I was strumming my Martin backpacker, Hob stopped and said hi. Seasoned bluegrass guy meets young folkie, we settled on Wabash Cannonball so he could jam. I did my best to keep up with him on rhythm. A little crowd gathered around. Then we said goodbye, my Dad and I wrote the song on airport bar napkins. My Dad was in his mid 60’s at the time, now Dad is 86, about the same age as Hob was when we met him. Though we never saw Hob again, I sang the song at shows for 13 years more years, until an audience member told me he googled the song and learned Hob had just passed away, his obituary showed up. Turned out Hob was from Tuscaloosa Alabama, lived to be 97, died in the Spring of 2013. He played in a bluegrass jam every Thursday night, up to the Sunday he passed away. Beloved in the area, he carved his own fiddles.

lyrics

Hob Thrasher
By Mike and Jack McNevin

I met Hob Thrasher at the airport
Thanksgiving weekend, movin’ slow
He sat beside me with his grandson
He had his fiddle case in tow

He asked me if I played rhythm
I said maybe now, lets see
We spent a little while tunin’
Played the Wabash Cannonball in G

When you got ninety year old fingers
You play the fiddle best you can
And when you’re stuck inside an airport
You let a stranger join your band

There was not a crowd around us
We weren’t in anybody’s way
And we didn’t mind who heard us
We were glad enough to play

Now maybe some folks don’t like waitin’
And maybe some don’t like to fly
And maybe others miss their jet planes
And pick a tune to pass the time

When you got ninety year old fingers
You play the fiddle best you can
And when you’re stuck inside an airport
You let a stranger join your band

Hob looked at me over his glasses
He don’t read music off the stand
He just plays ‘em like he hears ‘em
And teaches youngsters how to jam

Well, don’t look at me to play no solo
I’m playin bad enough for now
I’ll just play rhythm for Hob Thrasher
And tap my heel on the ground

When you got ninety year old fingers
You play the fiddle best you can
And when you’re stuck inside an airport
You let a stranger join your band

When you live 90 odd Thanksgivings
And you play the fiddle high and sweet
You got a tune to give your grandson
Wabash Cannonball in G


© Michael McNevin and Jack McNevin.
Mudpuddle Music / Michael McNevin (ASCAP).
All Rights Reserved.
P.O. Box 2235 Fremont CA 94536

credits

released June 1, 2021
Michael McNevin - Vocals & Acoustic Guitar
Tracy Grammer - Fiddle
Dave Stoddard - Accordion
Jack McNevin sings the last two words of the song.
Produced by Tom Prasada-Rao
Additional recording by Steven Sarmiento

© Michael McNevin and Jack McNevin.
Mudpuddle Music / Michael McNevin (ASCAP).
All Rights Reserved.
P.O. Box 2235 Fremont CA 94536

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all rights reserved

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about

Michael McNevin San Francisco, California

Michael McNevin's songs read like short stories, a keen eye for detail for the characters and places in his travels. Shared stages with Johnny Cash & The Carter Family, Donovan, Shawn Colvin, Christine Lavin, Richie Havens. Main-stages at Strawberry, High Sierra, Kerrville, Philly Folk Fest. Kerrville New-Folk winner, “DYI Artist Of The Year” for Performing Songwriter, “Song Of The Year” for WCS. ... more

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