Brad Leftwich is regarded as one of the foremost old-time musicians in the United States. He is especially noted for performing and teaching authentic, traditional-style fiddle and banjo. He has been a frequent staff member at music camps. Over the years he has played with a variety of bands, including Plank Road, Leftwich & Higginbotham, Tom, Brad & Alice, The Hogwire Stringband, and The Humdingers. Brad's grandfather, a banjo player, and his great-uncle, a fiddler, came from Fancy Gap, in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Carroll County, Virginia. In the early 1900s, they moved to Kansas with their families to become tenant farmers. Brad's father, an old-time singer and guitar player, was raised on the farm near Burden, Kansas, and Brad first heard old-time fiddle and banjo played at family gatherings there. He learned to play guitar from his father, started playing banjo at age 15, and took up fiddle a couple of years later. Since his grandfather and great-uncle had died by then, he sought the roots of his family's musical traditions in the southern Appalachians. In 1973, at the age of 20, he met the man who became his most influential mentor, the legendary fiddler Tommy Jarrell of Mount Airy, North Carolina. Tommy's mother-in-law was a Leftwich, a first cousin of Brad's grandfather, and in the liquor-making days of his youth, Tommy had a still near the Leftwich home in Virginia and played music with a brother and sister of Brad's grandfather. An immediate bond was formed and even after 50 years Brad still credits Tommy with teaching him traditional techniques that helped him play, not only Round Peak music but other styles as well.