In the Graham Senior Citizen Center’s main recreation room, a crowd of 21 sits in groups of various sizes around multiple circular tables. Some are conversing with one another, and others are watching a group of 12 musicians fill the area with their country and gospel songs.

As Hank Williams’ “Your Cheatin’ Heart” is sung by Wayne Boyle, the other 11 musicians including nine guitarists, a bassist and a mandolin player accompany him with surprising clarity given the fact that this is the first time they’ve all played together. 

Wayne Widner, father of Graham’s own police chief Tony Widner and emcee of this little shindig, grabs the microphone stand from Boyle and places it in front of Nell Crisp, the only female in the group. She leads the pickers in a beautiful rendition of Patsy Cline’s “Makin’ Believe,” and during an instrumental break, guitarist Norman Musgrave takes a twangy solo on his Fender Telecaster. 

Read the full story in this weekend's edition of The Graham Leader.