Maine native Dick Bowden has been playing hillbilly and bluegrass guitar since 1961, having learned by ear and eye from his parents. (And that’s how he teaches.) By 1966 they had The Bowden Family bluegrass band which evolved by 1975 into The Fort Knox Volunteers. In the mid-1980s Dick played banjo and lead guitar with Herb Applin’s Berkshire Mt. Boys and got to observe Bea Lilly’s guitar style “close up”. In the 1990s Dick appeared as “Martin Case” in The Case Brothers mandolin-guitar brother duet, releasing two recordings. He played banjo on fiddler Joe Meadows’ final recording “Cotton Eyed Joe”. Dick pitched the song “52 Vincent Black Lightning” to the Del McCoury Band. In the early years of the 21st century Dick played guitar and banjo with The Old Time Bluegrass Singers featuring IBMM Bluegrass Pioneer Herb Applin, releasing two recordings. During this period he also played some Dobro with The Tennessee Mafia Jug Band at northeastern festivals and on WSM’s Grand Ole Opry!
Dick plays guitar with a thumb pick and finger pick, a la Lester Flatt, but also can play with a flat pick when the situation calls for it. His favorite guitar heroes are Charlie Monroe, Lester Flatt, Jimmy Martin, Charlie Waller and Del McCoury.