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Joe Wilson honored by hometown

By Kristy Wolfe
One of Johnson County’s own was honored in a musical tribute on Saturday, September 22nd at Heritage Hall. Wayne Henderson, Jeff Little and Helen White performed various songs in a musical tribute to honor Joe Wilson. Originally from Trade, Wilson has traveled far and wide on the music circuit, but has never forgotten his roots in Johnson County.
As a man of many talents, Wilson has bunked with Willie Nelson, was once a roadie with Marty Robbins, and was the executive director of the National Council for the Traditional Arts. He was a major contributor to the launching of The Crooked Road Music Trail and planned 42 musical festivals. One of his most highlighted achievements involved bringing bluegrass music to the people of Thailand with the Roots of America exhibit.
Henderson, Little and White, along with bass player, Herb Key, took the stage as the musical tribute began. “It is great to be here to honor one of my best friends,” Henderson said. “He has been a big help to me.”
Henderson himself is no stranger to the spotlight. He received the National Heritage Award in 1995 and is well known for fine craftsmanship of beautiful hand crafted instruments. One of his guitars is owned and played by musician, Eric Clapton. Each of the artists took turns taking jabs at Wilson with stories full of partial truths and humorous anecdotes, much to the delight of the audience. All in good fun, Wilson enjoyed the circus tales and musical jokes along with the crowd. Heritage Hall board president, Linda Moon presented Wilson with a plaque. “The best teacher I ever had from Bulldog to Columbia was Evelyn Cook,” said Wilson in a brief speech where he shared memories of his educational career.
For the rest of the story, pick up a copy of this week's Tomahawk.