Dave Van Ronk

Category: Artist
Time period: Post-WWII

Date nominated: Apr 10, 2010
Date inducted: Sep 1, 2020
Ratings: 21
Average rating: 3.87

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Dave Van Ronk was a folksinger, blues performer, ragtime guitarist, etc. But his primary relevance here is that he recorded one of the first jug band revival LP's, circa 1960, with his band, the Ragtime Jug Stompers.
From The Mayor of Macdougal Street: As for the jug band, that came about more or less by accident. One weekend Max Gordon, the owner of the Village Vanguard, was in Cambridge for some reason, and he walked by the Club 47 and saw this huge line of people waiting to get in to see the Jim Kweskin Jug Band. In his mind's eye he transposed this queue to 7th Avenue South, where he had his room, and visions of sugarplums started dancing in his head. So when he got back to New York, he called Robert Shelton and said, "Are there any jug bands around town?" Bob said, "Well, yeah, but what you really ought to do is get hold of Dave Van Ronk and have him put one together." So he did, and I did. I called up a bunch of friends, and we formed the Ragtime Jug Stompers. Sam Charters was back in town, so he was our Pooh-Bah and Lord High Everything Else�he sang, arranged, and played washtub bass, washboard, jug, and occasionally would lend a hand on guitar. Barry Kornfeld played banjo and guitar. Artie Rose was on mandolin, and also played some fine Dobro. Finally, Danny Kalb, who had been a student of mine, played lead guitar and some very nice harmonica. (We also made him sing bass on "K.C. Moan," because he was the youngest and none of us wanted to do it.) It was a very flexible band because the musicians were all good enough to double or triple on various instruments, plus it had all the possibilities offered by kazoos and that sort of thing, so it was capable of more than one kind of sound.



Name Instruments Birth Death
Sam Charters Jug, Washboard, Washtub Bass
Danny Kalb Guitar, Harmonica
Barry Kornfield Banjo, Guitar
Artie Rose Mandolin
Dave Van Ronk a.k.a. "The Mayor Of MacDougal Street" Guitar, Kazoo


Title Recorded  
"Everybody Loves My Baby" (Spencer Williams, Jack Palmer) ? 2:53