Series: Mercury Theatre

Show: Dueling Banjos

Dateline: Oct 30 2011

By Ross Altman


For FolkWorks of the World

Earl_Scruggs_Dueling_BanjoAn unusual amount of static has been detected at a radio switch station above Roswell, New Mexico, where an unmarked aircraft has just set down reputed to be carrying bluegrass banjo legend Earl Scruggs. He was said to be laying over at a local farmhouse en route to Los Angeles for a concert at UCLA’s Royce Hall on Saturday, November 5.

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Banjo Players on High Alert in Los Angeles:

Rapture Predicted for November 5 at Royce Hall

This is Orson Welles speaking from Grover’s Mill, New Jersey; Memo to Department of Homeland Security: we have received credible intelligence that Los Angeles banjo players are concerned for their safety as November 5 approaches. A recent discovery in Princeton, New Jersey of Nostradamus’ last prophecy proves that the world is about to end in a Martian attack to rid the city of five-string banjoists, based on the high probability that they will all be convened in one target area on that specific evening at UCLA’s Royce Hall. The medieval French scientist even pinpointed the time as 8:00pm sharp, when a high value target—Bluegrass pioneer Earl Scruggs—is scheduled to arrive on stage for a “concert.”

Read more: Dueling Banjos


By Ross Altman

WTCThe first new song to come out of the horrific events of September 11, 2001 was Neil Young’s Let’s Roll, named for United Flight 93’s hero Todd Beamer’s last words to his fellow passengers, as they rolled down the aisle to subdue the hijackers and crash their plane into a Pennsylvania farm field rather than let them bring down the White House.

Neil Young broke the ice for his fellow songwriters, as one by one they followed suit, from Bruce Springsteen’s The Rising, to Alan Jackson’s Where Were You When the World Stopped Turning? to Tom Paxton’s fine tribute to the firefighters, The Bravest.

There was also no shortage of songs that struck a more strident note, Toby Keith’s Courtesy of the Red, White and Blue (the Angry American) foremost among them.