It was sad to read of the death of Mac Wiseman, a few days ago, at the age of 93. In his long career of more than 70 years, his performances spanned many of the Roots genres, including Old Time ballads, Bluegrass (for which he was best known), Western Swing, Classic Country, and Rock & Roll (appearing, for example, with Duane Eddy). In the 1940s he played bass in the Cumberland Mountain Folks, one of the first commercial string bands fronted by a woman, Molly O'Day. Later he played with Flatt & Scruggs in the Foggy Mountain Boys, and with Bill Monroe in the Bluegrass Boys.

He was also noted for work on the organizational side of Country Music - he helped to found the CMA, and served as their first Secretary. (He was, in fact the CMA's last living founder member.) Nearly thirty years later, he also helped to set up the IBMA (which is more inclusive of the musical forms he had been most associated with). He was also an executive with Dot Records, heading their Country division.

Mac will be best remembered for his rich, warm voice, which was regarded as one of the best male voices in the genre.

In this performance, when he was in his late eighties, he is accompanied on mandolin by Sierra Hull, a young IBMA awardee who recently guested at the CMA, showing that the musical links Mac personified still have a contemporary role to play:

There is a fuller appreciation of Mac Wiseman, by Nasville journalist and songwriter, Peter Cooper, here: