Meridian Star

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May 14, 2013

Lauderdale County’s son: Marcus Linton

MERIDIAN —     Marcus Linton sits on the porch of Grand Oak Bluegrass Gospel Hall in southeast Lauderdale County playing a Martin banjo while fielding a reporter's questions.

    “Are you a perfectionist?”

    He stops playing, looks out into the pines surrounding the place. “Some may accuse me of such,” he smiles then laughs, “but no, I wouldn’t say I’m a perfectionist.”

    Appearing relaxed, Linton explains the first time he picked up an instrument was when he was diagnosed with mononucleosis during the first couple of weeks of seventh grade. His two siblings and all of his friends were at school.

    He had nothing to do so he went and found his Dad’s old Harmony Tenor, listened to a cassette called Hee Haw Gospel Quartet and began to play.

    Within a year Linton was playing a banjo and performing with his Dad, Andy Linton, at church functions. “Sometimes I would play something and he would say, ‘I didn’t know you knew how to do that.’” Marcus was playing by ear, finding friends who were also musically inclined.

    Music became an after school pastime, and it wasn’t long before rumor had it that there was no string instrument Linton couldn’t play.

    “Well, I haven’t ever tried a pedal steel guitar,” he said with a laugh when asked about the rumor.

    Linton, 25, owns four guitars, two banjos, two dobros, two fiddles, a mandolin and a keyboard. He plays alongside his dad at Bethany Baptist Church, where he serves as worship leader and youth minister.

    The young Linton was recently ordained as a minister and feels any talent he has was God given. Gospel and bluegrass are a natural fit for him.

    On May 18 Linton will take the stage beside his dad and the rest of the members of The Andy Linton Band during the Possum Holla festival.

    Tickets are  $11 for a one-day pass and $20 for two days if purchased  in Quitman at the Chamber of Commerce or Great Southern National Bank.

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