Americana Music Bluegrass Music

YouTube Finds: Otis Gibbs, Mark O’Connor, Sam Bush

First off, I will be making a big announcement (at least to me) in next week’s blog, as I haven’t completed my actions yet. The announcement will be shocking to some, expected by others, but it is something that I feel that I need to do in my heart.

Now, let’s get to some quick business. I briefly mentioned it in my last blog, but I implore you to check out the Otis Gibbs channel on YouTube (! I have been fortunate enough to hang out with Otis on occasion at previous AmericanaFests in Nashville. While a few of the videos are of his songs and performances, the truly enjoyable ones are of his interviews with people in the music industry. These people are not stars or business moguls. These are the roadies, back-up musicians, and technicians that have amazing stories about working with the big-time performers. They are filmed in a way that is less like a documentary and more like a barroom conversation. A great one is of bassist/producer Mark Fain talking about working with Tom Petty. Just about every one of the videos is a treasure, so you won’t be disappointed.

Another great YouTube channel is one by Marc O’Connor ( Do I really need to tell you who Mark is? Besides being a phenomenon on the fiddle, he can put anyone to shame on mandolin and guitar as well. In fact, many of his recent videos showcase his guitar skills recorded for his Markology II album. There are also fiddle duets with his wife Maggie, some instructional tidbits based on his successful O’Connor Teaching Method, and some amazing live performances throughout the years. He also has some videos of classical violinists performing some of his compositions. Of course, you could never go wrong seeing Mark jamming with Tony Rice, Sam Bush, Bela Fleck, Jerry Douglas and Mark Schatz.

Speaking of Sam Bush, he’s been loading up his YouTube channel ( with a lot of great videos of him jamming in his living room with guests like Ronnie McCoury, Tim O’Brien, Bryan Sutton and Jeff Hanna. Plus, there are a few vids of him discussing his admiration of Jethro Burns while holding Burns’ mandolin. Sam is one of those guys that you wish was your next-door neighbor. Over the fence, you would be talking music, baseball, and the weather. Sam is a treasure, to be sure.

Chew on it and comment.