|2012 award of the National|
Endowment for the Art’s
highest honor, the
National Heritage Fellowship
Born in Washington, D.C.,Auldridge started playing guitar at the age of 13. His main influence through his early years was Josh Graves who also sold him his first Dobro. A 1967 graduate of The University of Maryland, Auldridge worked as a graphic artist for a commercial art firm in Bethesda, Maryland and then for the now defunct Washington Star-News. He did not start playing music full-time until the Washington Star-News folded in 1976.
Auldridge last played with Darren Beachley and The Legends of the Potomac bluegrass band. Past bands include Emerson and Waldron, Cliff Waldron and the New Shades of Grass, Seldom Scene (of which he was a founding member), Chesapeake, The Good Deale Bluegrass Band, and John Starling and Carolina Star (which featured three original members of The Seldom Scene). Mike was also a member of the touring bands of Lyle Lovett and Emmylou Harris.
Auldridge worked with Paul Beard (Beard Guitars) to produce the Beard Mike Auldridge Models of square-neck resophonic guitars, including an 8-string version. Just one day prior to his 74th birthday, he died on December 29, 2012 in hospice care in Silver Spring, Maryland after a lengthy battle with cancer.
Mike Auldridge, founding member of D.C.’s Seldom Scene bluegrass group, dies at 73
Mike Auldridge, a bluegrass musician whose broad knowledge of many musical forms helped redefine and modernize the steel guitar known as the Dobro, died Dec. 29 at his home in Silver Spring. He died a day before his 74th birthday.