We are pleased to offer several biographical resources on Doc Watson here at Doc's Guitar:
One of the most comprehensive biographies of Doc Watson was written by Dan Miller of Flatpicking Guitar Magazine. It appeared in the September-October 1998 issue of the magazine (which focused on Doc Watson), and also as an introduction to the instruction book "Legacy of Doc Watson" by Steve Kaufman (Mel Bay Publications). We are pleased to offer this complete biography here at Doc's Guitar in Adobe Acrobat format. To view it, you'll need the Acrobat Reader plug-in for your browser.
The Milestones project offers a unique and intimate view of Doc Watson's life. The project was produced by Nancy Watson, Doc Watson's daughter and over a decade in the making before its releas in 2013. It is the story of the Watson family – a story told in song, narrative and photograph. The project features 94 previously unreleased tracks and 600 family photos arranged into 50 collages created by Nancy. It is a collection that was created entirely from within the family, with input from Doc himself. This is truly a remarkable project that brings you inside the Watson family and the traditions that shaped Doc's music.
To learn more, and to purchase Milestones, click here.
Legacy is a 3-CD set in which Doc talks about his life - and music. David Holt interviews Doc on the first two CDs and joins with Doc for a concert on the third disc. The conversation between Doc and David is like they are sitting right in your living room - you feel like you're right there with them. This is the closest thing to an audio biography of Doc that you will find, and the concert on the third disc is just icing on the cake. If you're a serious Doc Watson fan, Legacy is a must-have addition to your collection. Legacy track listing and ordering information
|1923||Arthel Lane "Doc" Watson born in Stoney Fork Township, near Deep Gap, North Carolina, on March 3, 1923|
|1947||Doc marries Rosa Lee Carlton|
|1949||Son Eddy Merle Watson born (Named after Eddy Arnold and Merle Travis)|
|1951||Daughter Nancy Ellen Watson born|
|1953||Doc gets a job playing electric lead guitar in Jack Williams country and western swing band|
|1960||Doc is "discovered" when Ralph Rinzler meets him while in North Carolina to record Clarence "Tom" Ashley|
|1961||Doc, Gaither Carlton, Tom Ashley, Fred Price, and Clint Howard travel to New York to perform a concert sponsored by Friends of Old Time Music|
|1962||Doc's first solo appearance, at Gerde's Folk City|
|1964||Merle starts learning the guitar; in June he plays backup guitar for Doc at the Berkeley Folk Festival|
|1973||Doc receives his first Grammy award. This is followed by five more Grammys over the years|
|1985||Merle Watson dies tragically in a tractor accident on the night of October 23rd|
|1988||Doc is awarded the National Heritage Fellowship by the National Endowment for the Arts|
|1988||The first Merlefest is held in remembrance of Merle Watson|
|1997||Doc receives the the National Medal of the Arts from President Clinton|
|2004||Doc is awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award by the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences at their 2004 Grammy Awards show|
|2012||Doc passes away on May 29 at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center in Winston-Salem, NC following abdominal surgery. Doc's wife Rosa Lee passes away six months later on November 22.|