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Old Crow Medicine Show Biography


Home > Music > O > Old Crow Medicine Show > Biography


Birth Place: Harrisonburg, Virginia
Years Active: 1998-present
Genres: Folk, Country, Bluegrass, Americana, Old-time


Old Crow Medicine Show is an old-time string band based in Nashville, Tennessee. Their music has been called bluegrass, Americana, and alt-country, in addition to old-time. Along with original songs, the band performs many pre-World War II blues and folk songs. They have been recording since 1998.

One day, while the band was busking outside a pharmacy called Boone Drug in Boone, North Carolina, the daughter of folk-country legend Doc Watson happened by and was impressed by what she heard. Doc Watson invited the band to participate in his annual MerleFest music festival in Wilkesboro, North Carolina. That break led to the act's relocation to Nashville in 2000, where they were “embraced and mentored” the president of the Grand Ole Opry Marty Stuart, Gillian Welch and Welch's longtime songwriting partner and guitarist, David Rawlings. They made their Grand Ole Opry debut on the Ryman Auditorium stage in 2001 to a standing ovation.

Their self-titled, debut full-length album (also known as “O.C.M.S.”) was released in 2004. The songs are roughly an even split of obscure traditional tunes and original compositions by the band members. It includes the band's signature tune, “Wagon Wheel,” which is based on a fragment of a Bob Dylan song. The Rawlings produced album peaked at #1 on the Billboard Bluegrass Albums chart and #68 on the Country Albums chart. Welch appeared on drums on several of the album’s tracks.

“Big Iron World,” their second album, was released in 2006. Again produced by Rawlings and reaching #1 on the Bluegrass Albums chart, it also peaked at #27 on the Country Albums chart.

Their album, “Tennessee Pusher” was released in 2008 and became their third consecutive album to peak at #1 on the Bluegrass Albums chart. Produced by Don Was, the album also reached #7 on the Country Albums chart and #50 on the Billboard 200 Albums chart.