Fiddlers' Pilgrimage: The Weiser Legacy

Banner for the National Oldtime Fiddlers' Contest
Fiddlers' Pilgrimage: The Weiser Legacy explores the reasons that oldtime fiddling is thriving in our time, and why Weiser, Idaho, is the western mecca for this traditional art form. Western Folklife Center producers attended the 60th National Oldtime Fiddlers Contest and Festival and joined players and their devoted fans for this defining cultural event which each June transforms this tiny community of farmers and ranchers.

Listen to the Fiddlers Pilgrimage Radio Special (59 minutes)

In a special tribute event, the Western Folklife Center organized a Fiddlers' Pilgrimage concert held May 10, 2013 in Boise. The radio documentary premiered the following week on Boise State Public Radio. Click here to read more about these events. Read more about old-time fiddling in our Press Release. Below are images and sound from the 2012 contest as well as a look at Weiser of yesteryear.

See and listen to Weiser from yesteryear.

Photo by Hal Cannon
Retired professor Frank Metcalf       
drove from Vancouver, British
Columbia, to jam at the Stickerville           
Photo by Hal Cannon
Grand National contestant Sedra
Bistodeau and her father Bob
drove 1600 miles from Princeton,
Minnesota, to get to Weiser.

Listen to Sedra Bistodeau perform the "Clarinet Polka."

Photo by Hal Cannon
Brandon Wilson won third place in       
the Small Fry Division in 2012.  He
and his family are spending 2013
touring as a family band.         
Photo by Hal Cannon
Aaron Carter is the creater of
Fiddle TV and a contestant at the
National Oldtime Fiddlers Contest.

Listen to Mia Orosco perform "Don't Let The Deal Go Down."

Photo by Hal Cannon
Nineteen year old Mia Orosco wins
1st Place in the 2012 Grand National     
Division. She is flanked by (from left),
Katrina Nicolayeff, Katie Glassman
and Jaclyn Sites.
Photo by Hal Cannon
Ron Kane has been coming to
Weiser for more than 3 decades to
jam in the Stickerville campground.

Listen to Katrina Nicolayeff perform "Roxanne."

Photo by Hal Cannon
Vivian and Phil Williams have
been coming to Weiser since the              
1960s and are creators of
Voyager Records, which releases 
collections of traditional fiddle
and acoustic music.
Photo by Hal Cannon
Jim Widner (right) competed in
Weiser in the 1950s and 1960s. 
He brought down the house as a
guest performer in 2012.

Listen to Jim Widner perform "Flop Eared Mule."

Photo by Hal Cannon 
Bruce Campbell,Chairman of the              
Board of the National Oldtime
Fiddlers Contest, draws a card
during the final round of the
Grand National Championship.
Photo by Hal Cannon

An afternoon jam session at the
Stickerville campground in Weiser,
Idaho, in 2012.

Watch a slideshow of the National Oldtime Fiddlers' Contest:

Fiddlers' Pilgrimage
is produced by Taki Telonidis and Hal Cannon of the Western Folklife Center and was made possible through the generous support of the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation, with assistance from the National Oldtime Fiddlers Contest and Festival. Additional support was provided by the Idaho Humanities Council, a state-based program of the National Endowment for the Humanities, and by Boise State Public Radio.