About Clarence “Tom” Ashley
Clarence “Tom” Ashley was a performer, an artist, and a showman who spent 30 years traveling with a medicine show where he played clawhammer banjo, sang, and performed as a comedian. For two years, he traveled with a young fiddler named Roy Acuff, who said Ashley “showed him the ropes” of show business.
Ashley was the first to record the legendary “House of the Rising Sun,” a song he learned from his grandfather, Enoch. Later, he influenced a whole generation of folk music of the 1950’s and 60’s including Bob Dylan, Joan Baez, Jean Ritchie, and Doc Watson. The album, Old Time Music at Clarence Ashley’s was inducted into National Recording Registry at the Library of Congress.