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Simon Spalding

Simon was born in San Francisco in 1956, and he grew up in the North Beach neighborhood of San Francisco in the 60’s and 70’s. He listened to a wide range of music, ranging from Renaissance and Medieval music to the Beatles and traditional Chinese music.

Simon studied violin in public school and in his teens took violin lessons and music theory classes at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. During his teens he taught himself to play banjo, mandolin, Chinese erh-hu, dulcimer, and guitar. He played contrabass balalaika in a Russian music group that toured and performed throughout the United States and Canada. Simon performed with this group on the Dinah Shore Show, at Carnegie Hall, and in pops concerts with the Baltimore, Honolulu, London-Ontario and San Francisco Symphonies.

Simon graduated from University of California- Berkeley (1978 BA-Music), where he studied Harmony, Counterpoint, Javanese Gamelan, Ethnomusicology, and other subjects. At this time he played fiddle in a variety of groups and styles. He created and directed Irish-Scottish music shows for the California Renaissance Festivals and has performed at Renaissance and other Festivals throughout the country.

Simon played fiddle, mandolin, and bodhran in the folk group Golden Bough, and he sang and played fiddle, mandolin, dulcimer, banjo, and electric bass in the San Diego-based band California Breezes. In fiddle and bass in the Texas-based folk-rock group Celtic Stone. All three groups performed throughout the United States and in several European countries. Simon's solo performances have taken him to a total of twelve European countries, and he has composed, arranged and performed music for dozens of commercial recordings and films.

Simon moved to North Carolina in 1989, living in Washington, Wilmington prior to moving to New Bern. He worked for five years as Living History Programs Manager at Tryon Palace and now devotes himself full-time to music teaching and performance. Simon continues to perform in the oldies band The Bears, the Jazz/World Music trio Casablanca, the Bluegrass trio Rock Bottom Deal, with his wife in the duo Tuppence ( as well as solo performances.

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