Trent Moody

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Trent Moody was only 12 when his older brothers Carlton Moody and David Moody officially started the Moody Brothers band and invited the little tyke to join as drummer. At this stage of his life, Trent…
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Trent Moody was only 12 when his older brothers Carlton Moody and David Moody officially started the Moody Brothers band and invited the little tyke to join as drummer. At this stage of his life, Trent Moody already had more professional experience than some artists with hit records, since his father and mother (Dwight and Cathy Moody) normally started their children out performing at about the age of seven on their gospel television show in Charlotte, NC. Dwight Moody is also a respected Appalachian fiddler who wound up playing some solos on the Moody Brothers' records that sound as if they have been soaked in moonshine. When he was 15 years old, Trent Moody went overseas with his brothers to back up the country singer/songwriter George Hamilton IV and while this the first significant break for the Moody Brothers, the group continued struggling in the highly competitive country music business until a series of recordings on the family's Lamon label began a process that was a bit like a giant snowball being rolled down a mountain, thankfully not trashing the hidden moonshine still in the process. The fourth of these recordings was a new arrangement of the square dance standard "Cotton Eyed Joe" literally took over the radio with a sound nobody was expecting. Listeners who absolutely could not stand country music, such as 13-year-old girls, became fanatic about the record and a decade or more after its initial success, "Cotton Eyed Joe" was still a popular selection at raves, discos, and even bar and bat mitzvahs. The tune even hit big in England and the band was invited to Europe for their own tour; four years later, there was yet another Grammy nomination in the same category for a much stronger piece of work, an album cut entitled "The Great Train Song Medley." In 1986, the group performed at the Inter Country Festival in Prague, Czech Republic, leading to a collaboration with Czech country music artist Jiri Brabec. Two years later, Brabec and his band Country Beat combined with the Moody Brothers to cut the album Friends for Czechoslovakia on the nationalized Supraphon label, an official publishing outlet of the country's Communist party. Distributed in the U.S. and western Europe by Lamon, the album went on to sell more than 100,000 copies, definitely establishing it as the most popular album of communist country & western music ever made. Although no institution hands out a plaque or trophy for such an accomplishment, and that's a shame, the Moody Brothers have captured awards and honors aplenty, including two Grammys and three International Country Music Awards. The group has performed at venues such as the Grand Ole Opry and the White House and since 1992 have been a regular attraction at the French Eurodisney Frontierland, presiding over a program of western-influenced music and sociology that goes all the way from old-time string band music and clogging to loud electric country rock and line dancing, actually not such a great distance after all. He works on his own in the group Cheyenne Stampede, led by the superb country vocalist April McDowell, and he has also been involved in transcriptions of his father's fiddle style, contributing to the book Improv for Violinists: A Guidebook for the Creative Violinist by John Henry Gates.