The Boys of Bluegrass

by: Alyssa Leet

Nine-year-old Cutter Singleton told me a little bit about the music his family makes and how much he loves to perform with his brother, Cash, who is six-years-old. Cutter will bring his new-to-him Earl Scruggs banjo and a guitar to The Heritage tonight and Saturday night, but those are just two among the four instruments he plays. He also strums on his mandolin and dobro. Singleton was inspired to start playing music while listening to the radio on his way to Land Between the Lakes with his mom, Shelley. The first tune he learned was “Pearl, Pearl, Pearl.” When asked which musicians were his favorite, Cutter replied, “oh, there’s a bunch of ‘em.” He listed many old country stars from Loretta Lynn to Lester Flatt to Earl Scruggs, the musician whose banjo Cutter now plays.

The Singleton brothers performing at Fohs Hall.

The Singleton brothers performing at Fohs Hall.

He grew up in a musical family and his first banjo teacher was Jack Martin. He listed several songs you might be hearing at The Heritage tonight including “Shucking the Corn,” “Nashville Blues,” and “Little Cabin Home on the Hill.” Cutter sometimes practices two hours a day and, when he can, coaxes his little brother Cash into singing along with him. Cutter says he loves to play music with his brother and looks forward to performing every chance he has. Singleton does not worry about making a mistake when he is performing because he “will just go right on with the show.” You will not see Cutter shaking in his boots before he steps up to the microphone. He does not get nervous before he performs and urges beginners to see it the same way: “it’ll be okay, you’ll be fine” he tells me he would say to someone stepping onto a stage for the first time.

Cutter has visited The Heritage before and when I asked him about his experience he said, “just to let you guys know, the food is delicious!” We agree with him on that point and we look forward to welcoming Cutter and Cash Singleton, the boys of bluegrass, this weekend for shows we will not forget.