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Chris Testerman

Chris Testerman

Musician and Instrument Maker Lansing, NC (Ashe County)

Chris Testerman plays old-time music and builds fiddles, dulcimers, and other stringed instruments.  Chris grew up in the Whitetop region of Grayson County, Virginia, and he has performed on stages all across the country and internationally.  He makes his home in Lansing, North Carolina, playing music with his band The Cabin Creek Boys and teaching in the Ashe and Alleghany Junior Appalachian Musician programs.

Chris became interested in traditional music as a student at Mount Rogers Combined School, eventually playing in the Albert Hash Memorial String Band.  The group was formed by Albert Hash in 1982, and it was continued after his death by his daughter, Audrey Hash Ham and later, Emily and Thornton Spencer.

As a high school student, Chris became extremely interested in the construction of the fiddle, and he sought out the expertise of Audrey Hash Ham and Archie Powers.  Powers was a native of Ashe County and long-time friend of Albert Hash.  In addition to making fiddles since his youth, Chris studied banjo making with Johnny Genrtry, from Mountain Park, North Carolina.  He also studied dulcimer making with Walter Messick from Whitetop, Virginia.  Chris has a fiddle on display with a traveling exhibit called “The Luthier’s Craft,” dedicated to Albert Hash and his daughter, Audrey, celebrating the rich musical legacy they left behind.

Since 2012, Chris has taught in the Ashe and Alleghany County Junior Appalachian Musicians Program.  In addition to making instruments and teaching, Chris performs with his band, Cabin Creek Boys, which includes his wife, Erika Testerman, Jackson Cunningham, and Trish Fore.  The band started around 2003 and continues to play occasional shows, festivals, and fiddlers conventions around the region.  Chris also fills in with a number of old-time and bluegrass bands from the region.

Chris is available for teaching, performing, and workshops.  Orders for instruments may be made by contacting Chris directly by email, phone, or on his Facebook page – Mount rogers Music Center.