Uncle Dave Dougherty performs concerts, variety shows and musical theatre as an entertainer, vocalist and musician.
Today as an entertainer, Uncle Dave Dougherty employs a variety of music genres to engage audiences and show them a great time. Using a combination of storytelling, humor and music, Uncle Dave brings back to life the feeling of the 'good old days' when life was simpler and slower-paced. While his performances are lively and bring people to their feet, his songs relate real life emotions and situations as well. Uncle Dave is able to connect with his audiences in a way that encourages smiles, laughter, and moves them to tears.
Uncle Dave goes to great pains to explain that he does not play 'bluegrass' music.' "I play what used to be called 'hillbilly music' or 'old time music'," says Dougherty. "I'm somewhere between Webb Pierce and The Fruit Jar Drinkers." His repertoire ranges from Broadway tunes of the 1850s and Library of Congress archival material to country music classics.
"I do a song called 'Carve Dat Possum' but I also do 'Crazy Arms.' I try to stick with tunes I have a feeling for and can put over to an audience." Dougherty has won rave reviews for his banjo technique, which entails playing the same notes a fiddle would play on a tune instead of what he calls the "monotonous banjo clawhammer, bum-tiddy-bum-tiddy rhythm." Dave says, "I've quit playing the banjo per se and instead play music on the banjo. Big difference." Dave relates, "I don't care if people don't think I'm a great singer or picker as long as they go home and say, 'That Uncle Dave has the best show I've ever seen.'"
At a recent musical theatre performance, Uncle Dave and his band performed the "Uncle Dave's Radio Hour." Featuring Bill Knowlton as the "solemn old judge," the Radio Hour crossed over to musical theatre as the cast members included actors, musicians, cloggers and well-known personalities. Uncle Dave and his band perform variety shows and musical theatre as well as concerts, all designed to engage audiences in a unique way.
Dougherty left Georgia at age 19 to tour with the "Bluegrass Express" which included Country Music Hall of Famer Bill Monroe. He learned his show business skills with the legendary Stoneman Family
The young Dougherty's singing style was influenced by the greats of
country music like Roy Acuff, Carl Smith and, of course, Pop Stoneman. Uncle Dave's career has seen performances at The Royal Albert Hall in London, New York's Lincoln Center and a fabled television appearance on The Johnny Cash show with Bill Monroe.
"Appearing for the first time in New York's oldest bluegrass and
oldtime country festival, Dave and his merry bunch totally captivated the crowd with their stringband tunes, ballads and novelty numbers, and Dave himself proved perfectly that showmanship and great comedy are still an important part of authentic country music."
Bill Knowlton, Producer, Emcee
WCNY-FM (91.3) Syracuse, NY; WUNY (89.5) Utica, NY; WJNY (90.9)
"One of the best Old Timey bands on the circuit today, playing the old tunes and songs with a lot of flair and good, downhome humor. It's obvious that Dave and the band are having a grand old time with their music, and it's completely infectious."
Bound For Glory
WVBR, Cornell University
"If you love great traditional music in the old-time way, you couldn't find anything more refreshing than Uncle Dave Dougherty and the Trough Sloppers. Uncle Dave has played with many old-time greats including The Stonemans. As more and more young folks are getting into this wonderful unique style of music, Uncle Dave, to me, is a big reason why. He has (and continues) to inspire many people who have been heavy metal fans, but now who are hooked to the great old time music of Uncle Dave and the Trough Sloppers."
SPBGMA Bluegrass DJ of the year
"The songs roll along at a good tempo and the harmonies are so sweet
and well balanced it's a real joy to hear them. The instrumentals are also well paced, making me think there could be dancers in the band. Fine singing and playing, with an equally high standard of
arrangements and production. Congratulations on a delightful album and thank you for the opportunity to share it.
'Come All Ye'
Uncle Dave (banjo, violin, mandolin, )