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Western KY musicians who lost instruments in storms receive replacements this weekend

Cathy Currier
Cheri Lawson
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Cheri Lawson
Cathy Currier, manager, and luthier at Currier's Music World in Richmond, Ky led a group of volunteers as they cleaned and refurbished instruments

Musicians in western Kentucky who lost their instruments in the tornadoes are getting some help this weekend. Kentucky folksinger Michael Johnathon is the host and producer of the internationally syndicated WoodSongs Old Time Radio Hour. He and a group of volunteers have been collecting musical instruments from around the country to replace instruments lost or broken in the storms. Johnathon said he believes in America's front porch and all those front porches touched by tornadoes are gone.

" What made their hometowns a hometown is all gone. And so, this is something that I knew that we could contribute to bring back to those devastated areas-the music and the art that they lost."

Johnathon said more than 1000 instruments have been donated from as far away as Alaska. All instruments including banjos, guitars, mandolins, and flutes are being cleaned and refurbished by volunteers.

Volunteers like Cathy Currier, manager at Currier's Music World in Richmond are working to refurbish instruments collected from all over North America. Currier said, frequently, the donations come with handwritten notes.

“I get emotional talking about it because people have just gone above and beyond, during COVID, during this crazy time and to see the outpouring, people coming in my store has been. It kind of restores your faith in humanity, it really does."

Currier said out of the 1000 instruments donated more than 350 have been sent to her store. The instruments will be distributed at three locations in western Kentucky this weekend. They will be at the Graves County library Friday evening from 5-8PM. On Saturday they will be at West Dawson Music Venue in Dawson Springs from noon until 4PM and Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame and Museum in Owensboro from 6-8PM.

Cheri is a broadcast producer, anchor, reporter, announcer and talk show host with over 25 years of experience. For three years, she was the local host of Morning Edition on WMUB-FM at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. Cheri produced and hosted local talk shows and news stories for the station for nine years. Prior to that, she produced and co-hosted a local talk show on WVXU, Cincinnati for nearly 15 years. Cheri has won numerous awards from the Public Radio News Directors Association, the Ohio and Kentucky Associated Press, and both the Cincinnati and Ohio chapters of the Society for Professional Journalists.
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