December 30, 1938 – December 29, 2012
Mike Auldridge was a much respected master of the resophonic guitar, or as it is more commonly known, the dobro. Born in Washington, DC, Auldridge began playing the guitar at the age of 13. He eventually transitioned to the dobro, but didn’t began playing music full-time until he was around 40, when the Washington Star-News closed its doors. He had had been earning his living as a graphic artist for the paper. In 1971, Auldridge c0-founded the Seldom Scene with a handful of musicians he jammed with each week. The band, much to the chagrin of traditionalists, married bluegrass with jazz, folk, and rock. By doing so, they were pioneers of progressive bluegrass, or what they called “acid grass,” which has been popularized by such jam bands as String Cheese Incident. As an in-demand session player, Auldridge played on records by Bill Monroe, Linda Ronstadt, Emmylou Harris, Ricky Skaggs, Doc Watson, Ralph Stanley, and many more. During the ’90s, he played in Chesapeake with former members of the Seldom Scene. Over the course of his career, Auldridge was awarded a Grammy as well as numerous other accolades, and in 2012, he was named a National Endowment for the Arts Heritage Fellow. Mike Auldridge was 73 when he died of cancer on December 29, 2012.