Billy Mathews is known far and wide across this land for his musical
skill and old time fiddling ability. He has traveled
extensively throughout the Midwest for over 40 years.
Thoughtful musical kinships, maintained throughout these many years, have earned him a considerable amount of notoriety and
recognition in Old Time music circles. more
True to his name, Billy continues to play and record
vast amount of Old Time Clawhammer Banjo tunes. Billy has released
a recording of Original Banjo Tunes,
The Ghost of Banjo Billy.
Billy still resides in the Ozark Mountains, continuing work on
music projects. Billy keeps busy by traveling throughout the country for
workshops, concerts and other special events, playing his
huge repertoire of old time fiddle and banjo tunes.
A Collection of 500 Traditional Old Time Style Fiddle Tunes
Billy has learned
All tunes are available now to
Billy's Other Fiddle Recordings Include:
Children of Foreign Lands
A Rogue's Buffet
Fiddle Tunes from Around the World
Original Fiddle Tunes Square and Contra Dance
20 Old Time Waltzes
Traditional Old Time American Dance Tunes
Also, true to his name,
Banjo Billy plays a variety of banjos as owner of the
Ghost of Banjo Billy,
of Original Minstrel Style Banjo Tunes.
" what true traditional
banjo playing has really always been
Rd Lunceford~Old Time Music Herald
For other Banjo Recordings visit
or check out the
History of Banjo Billy
"I have lived in the Ozark Hills most of my
adult life. I moved to the Ozarks from Northwest Colorado in my
22nd year. I came and found a quiet and serene area in the
Osage Creek Valley in Southern Carroll County, Arkansas. At the
time, my first born, Katie, was just 6 months old. We arrived in June of
1975 to what was referred to as the "Old Philips Place," a small
two-room shot gun house nestled in a clearing by the dirt road.
There was a barn, chicken house, pond and a shed. The spring was
not too far from the house and the privy was a short ways out back.
It was here that I would build a house, raise my children, and do
unimaginable amounts of grueling, back-breaking, physical labor and
literally dig out a life from the rough, rocky hillside. At the
time, I was young and wild-eyed with enthusiasm for the challenge at
hand. Kinfolk, still connected to the old ways, quickly taught me
many important and valuable lessons about the trials and tribulations of
rural Ozark life. I consider myself very fortunate, indeed to have
had the opportunity to witness and experience a large number of rural
Ozark Traditions, first hand.
The hill folks possess a simple, subtle philosophy which is very
endearing and demonstrates the incredibly strong character of these
self-reliant people. It's the memories that go with the music.
A tune reminds you of friends you have known, the places you've been,
and the good times you have had. There is a strong element of
truth conveyed throughout this music about who we are as people.
Old time music is still very much alive and well in the hearts
and souls of those who play and those who listen." Regards,
Legend in His Own Time~
literally become the embodiment of his Scot-Irish ancestors by
continuing their traditional approach to life.
Billy continues to collect and play a huge
repertoire of old-time fiddle tunes. He has already made a
sizeable and significant contribution to our American musical culture
and there is
no end in sight!
Billy has been performing as a professional
musician for the past 40 years and has over 14 different recordings.
a member of the internationally
acclaimed old time string band,
Billy has shared the stage with such noteworthy musicians as Joe Burke,
John Koener John Hartford, The Fiddle Puppets, Mike Seeger, De Dannan,
Bill Monroe and more!
Billy has performed at some of the most prestigious music
festivals in the country including The Piccolo Spoleto Festival, The
Scott Joplin Ragtime Festival, The Brandywine Festival, The Savannah
Folk Festival and more!
Billy plays several other instruments, including
the piano, guitar, fiddle, mandolin, and banjolin.
Billy's Past Performances 1972- 2005- Coming Soon!