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Andy Leftwich

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About the video

Andy Leftwich and Allen Tolbert riding a little "Whitewater". All part of Barry's
Christmas Jam 2008.

About the artist

Born July 30, 1981, Andy Leftwich started playing the fiddle at the age of 6,
learning first from his father, and then from local musicians in the small rural
town of White House, Tenn. A year later, he entered his first fiddle contest, and
by age 9, he won the Tennessee State Championship for Beginners. By the time
he was a teenager, he had become proficient on both the mandolin and the
guitar in addition to the fiddle, and entered national contests for all three

Leftwich's first musical preferences were the old Texas fiddle tunes played by
musicians like Johnny Gimble, Mark O'Connor, Benny Thomasson and Texas
Shorty. At 14, he seriously began to study the styles of bluegrass fiddlers like
Benny Martin, Paul Warren, Stuart Duncan, Vassar Clements and Kenny Baker.
During this time, he also developed a respect for the mandolin playing of Adam
Steffey and Ricky Skaggs. He also came to appreciate musicians such as Miles
Davis, Wynton Marsalis, Stephane Grappelli, Django Reinhardt and Frank

When he was 15, Leftwich joined Valerie Smith and her band Liberty Pike as the
lead mandolin and fiddle player, and toured extensively with her throughout the
late 1990s. In February 2001, Skaggs asked him to join his band Kentucky
Thunder as a second fiddle player, surprising him with an on-stage invitation.

Leftwich released his solo debut album, Ride, on Skaggs Family Records in
2003. He played mandolin, guitar and fiddle throughout the all-instrumental
album, in addition to producing it and writing 10 of its 12 tracks.