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The “Holy Ghost” of American folk music, Bob Gibson on RAMBLIN – April 6 at 11 pm

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The first episode features legendary American folk singer Bob Gibson

ATHENS, OH – Over the next several months, WOUB TV will broadcast archive episodes of its nationally-distributed Folk and Bluegrass performance series Ramblin. Beginning April 6, the episodes will air on Saturdays at 11 p.m. on WOUB HD 20.1 and Sundays at 5 p.m. on WOUB Classic 20.2. The first episode, which originally aired on June 26, 1980, features legendary American folk singer Bob Gibson. Gibson’s principal instruments were banjo and 12-string guitar. He passed away in 1996 and was a key figure in the folk music revival in the late 1950s and early 1960s.

Bob Gibson on "Ramblin"
Gibson talking to audience during “Ramblin” performance on June 26, 1980

“I had a couple of good years in the early 60s,” Gibson said in an interview to start off the Ramblin episode. “Matter of fact, I think I had a pretty good shot at the brass ring. But it’s also evident to me that I couldn’t handle it because by 1966, I left the business for three years, and I didn’t sing for the next three years. I was hiding out in the country, thinking that staying out there and away from show business would take care of all of the problems that I was inflicting on myself.”

The roots of American folk music have been described as a trinity where Pete Seeger is the father, Bob Dylan is the son, and Gibson is the Holy Ghost. Gibson rose to nearly mythic fame then fell from grace. He chronicles years of addiction and recovery in his songs.

Ramblin was a one-hour program and focused on a different performer or group in each episode. It showcased the most respected names in acoustic music. In addition to “live on tape” concerts, the program’s producers, Greg Hill and Keith Newman, along with a crew made up of Ohio University students, worked with each artist to create personal and introspective programs which were informative as well as highly entertaining. Most of the episodes were recorded at the WOUB studios in Athens.

“It’s a good place I’m in right now,” Gibson went on to say in the Ramblin interview. “I think I’m in the place I ought to be. I’m really a saloon singer. I sing for small audiences well. I get a little lost when they are larger. And I’m real happy. I’m able to do what I like to do right now. I’m able to do it with good balance in my life.”

Upcoming Ramblin TV Schedule:

April 6 and 7 -: Bob Gibson

April 13 and 14 – Ramblin’ Jack Elliott

April 20 and 21 – Jean Ritchie

April 27 and 28 – Robin & Linda Williams

May 4 and 5 – The Hotmud Family

May 11 and 12 – Norman Blake & The Rising Fawn String Ensemble

May 18 and 19 – Mike Seeger/Elizabeth Cotton

May 25 and 26 – The McLain Family Band