Blind But Now I See
“Blind But Now I See: The Biography of Music Legend Doc Watson“ • From the day Doc Watson stepped off the bus in New York City, the North Carolina music legend changed the world forever. His influence has been recognized by presidents and by the heroes of modern music. This is the first comprehensive biography of Doc Watson, With never before released details about the American guitar icon’s life.
Featuring new interviews with popular musicians: Ben Harper, Michelle Shocked, Warren Haynes, Sam Bush, Bela Fleck, Tom Paxton, Maria Muldaur, John Cohen, Mike Seeger, Peggy Seeger, Abigail Washburn, Ketch Secor, Marty Stuart, Tony Rice, Pat Donohue, Peter Rowan, Si Kahn, Tommy Emmanuel, Tony Trischka, Guy Clark, David Grisman, Alice Gerrard, Edgar Meyer, Guy Davis, Jack Lawrence, Tao Rodriguez-Seeger, Jean Ritchie, Jerry Douglas, Jonathan Byrd, Larry Long, and many more.
Dr. Kent Gustavson earned his PhD from Stony Brook University in New York, where he now teaches music, leadership, and language. He speaks around the world on both music and publishing, and has interviewed hundreds of award-winning musicians and authors for his radio show Sound Authors. Dr. Gustavson has released more than a dozen audio recordings on his small independent record label Ninety and Nine Records. He lives and works in Sound Beach, New York. He is proficient in traditional instruments such as the banjo, mandolin, upright bass and guitar, but was trained as a classical composer in New York. He has interviewed hundreds of award-winning authors & musicians for his own radio show, and has been featured on National Public Radio‘s All Songs Considered.
“In August of 2010 I reviewed Kent Gustavson’s biography of Doc Watson, Blind but Now I See, on my blog. While I saw much of value in it, I criticized it on several fronts. Much of what I criticized at that time has been remedied in the current edition. It now contains an extensive index, a copious list of sources, and a selective discography. A large number of photographs have been added, some of which are in color. I chose one chapter (XIV) to examine more carefully. The chapter, which considers the similarities and differences between Doc Watson and Pete Seeger has been completely re-written and much improved. My much more cursory examination of the entire book suggests that to be the case throughout. While I haven’t time just now to re-read Blind but Now I See, I will take it along on our winter trip while I seek to find time to reread it. I can unreservedly recommend this book as a significant addition to the literature on Doc Watson and the only biography extant. Perhaps, because Gustavson did not receive the cooperation of the Watson family, making this an unauthorized biography, serves as an advantage, as he has not had to accommodate to the family’s wishes in picturing Doc Watson. It’s a fine read and a great gift.” ~ Ted Lehmann, www.facebook.com/lehmanns.bluegrass.adventure
“If you’re a dedicated Doc Watson fan, I think you would find this book an interesting read. It does get into some darker areas of Doc’s life, such as Merle’s death, but it also is a celebration of the man through the eyes and ears of those who know him.” ~ Steve Carr, www.docsguitars.com
“Hard to believe it’s been 50 years since Ralph Rinzler first introduced guitarist Doc Watson to the larger world. It’s a fitting anniversary for the first book-length biography on Doc to appear. It was long overdue. This is a valuable, anecdotal work anyone interested in Doc’s music and life will enjoy reading.” ~ Bluegrass Unlimited
“This is a highly informative, fascinating biography of the great Doc Watson. What a life. It’s a page-turner that will keep you up past your bedtime. Don’t miss it.” ~ The Inland Northwest Bluegrass Association
Coinciding with the 50th anniversary of Doc Watson’s introduction by Ralph Rinzler, Blooming Twig Books has just released “Blind But Now I See,” a no-holds barred biography of the legendary guitarist’s life and career. The first comprehensive biography of music legend DOC WATSON: “Blind But Now I See,” written by Dr. Kent Gustavson, includes interviews with Ben Harper, Warren Haynes, Bela Fleck, Taj Mahal, Sam Bush, Tony Rice and many more.
“Blind But Now I See” includes never before released details about Doc Watson’s life and music career and is already one of the most talked about books of the year. Chock-full of new and compelling interviews, the story is told through the experiences of more than 70 notable musicians and experts on Doc Watson’s life, including: Abigail Washburn, Alan O’Bryant, Alice Gerrard, Annie Bird, B. Townes, Bela Fleck, Ben Harper, Beppe Gambetta, Clint Howard, Darol Anger, David Grisman, David Moultrup, Don Rigsby, Donna Hill, Ed Pearl, Edgar Meyer, Ellen Harper-Verdries, George McCeney, Greg Brown, Guy Clark, Guy Davis, Jack Lawrence, James Reams, Jean Ritchie, Jerry Douglas, Joe Crookston, John Cohen, John Pushkin, Jonathan Byrd, Ketch Secor, Larry Long, Maria Muldaur, Mark Moss, Marty Stuart, Michelle Shocked, Mike Marshall, Mike Seeger, Norman Blake, Paddy Moloney, Pat Donohue, Paul Asbell, Paul Chasman, Peggy Seeger, Peter Rowan, Peter Siegel, Rebecca Lovell, Ricky Skaggs, Roland White, Sam Bush, Sarah Bryan, Si Kahn, Tao Rodriguez-Seeger, Tom Chapin, Tom Moore, Tom Paxton, Tommy Emmanuel, Tommy Sands, Tony Cartledge, Tony Rice, Tony Trischka, Warren Haynes and Wayne Henderson.
Written by Dr. Kent Gustavson, this controversial, first-ever biography of the folk and bluegrass icon has quickly become an Amazon Bestseller, reaching #1 in the Country & Folk category. The book was researched over six years, and provides the first ever comprehensive look into the folk music icon’s life. “Blind But Now I See” also features dozens of never-before-seen photographs, as well as artist renderings from throughout Doc Watson’s childhood and career.
The book reveals never before released details about Doc Watson’s life including:
• The inside story of Doc Watson’s discovery and rise to greatness, researched from the private notes of his late discoverer Ralph Rinzler, detailing Doc’s rise from sideman to superstar and from local stages to Carnegie Hall.
• A full history of Doc’s family, his time at the Raleigh School for the Blind, his family’s deep roots in North Carolina, and his treasured first string instrument, a banjo crafted by his father from the hide of his granny’s old cat.
• The true story of Doc’s son, slide guitarist Merle Watson’s rise to the top, his tragic tractor accident, and his friends who gathered around his grave at the funeral to sing “Midnight Rider.”
Doc Watson has been the true voice of Appalachian music for more than half a century. After being discovered in 1960 by folklorist Ralph Rinzler, the blind guitarist has graced thousands of American stages with his down-home wit, deep knowledge of traditional songs, and his blistering flatpicking guitar. Over a half century in the music business, Doc has influenced every musician with a pulse, from Bob Dylan to Jerry Garcia, and from Gillian Welch to Pete Seeger.
Inside this book are the untold stories from Doc Watson’s life and career, from the details of the tragic loss of his son Merle Watson in a late night accident, to the real story behind the abuse he suffered at the Raleigh School for the Blind, and his first trip alone on a bus to New York City with a borrowed Gibson guitar. The second revised and expanded edition of the only comprehensive biography of Doc Watson includes a Foreword by music writer Art Menius, as well as several new interviews and photographs. Doc Watson is a bridge between old and new music, electric and acoustic, New York and Nashville.
For More Information
WebSite • www.docwatsonbook.com
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Barnes & Noble • www.bit.ly/docwatsonbook-bn
Amazon • www.amzn.com/193775300X
Indie Bound • www.bit.ly/docwatsonbook-ib
Books-A-Million • www.bit.ly/docwatsonbook-bm
Cardinal Publishers Group • www.bit.ly/docwatsonbook-cpg
Twitter • www.twitter.com/drkent