April 15, 2019
Born in: Somers, NY
Resided in: Johnson City, TN
Clyde R. Franklin, Jr., passed away on April 15, 2019, at home in Johnson City, TN, after a long illness.
Clyde is survived by his partner in life, Sharlene C. Franklin, of the home; son, David R. Franklin, of Candler, NC; nephew, Lance Ponton and wife Caroline; great-nephews, Wesley Ponton and wife, Jessica, and Jared Ponton, and great-great-nephew, Asher, all of Canton, NC.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Doctors Clyde R. Franklin and Winifred A. Franklin, of New York, NY; his sister, Elizabeth F. Ponton, of Candler, NC; and nephew, Franklin Ponton, of Asheville, NC. Clyde was originally from Somers, NY, more recently in Asheville, NC, and the later years in Johnson City, TN. Clyde was a descendant of Ben Franklin on his father’s side of the family, and Mayflower descendant on his mother’s side.
Clyde graduated from Somers High School in Somers, NY, went to college at William and Mary in Williamsburg, VA, and Tusculum University in Greenville, TN.
Clyde is well known in the Bluegrass scene. He was the first owner of The Bluegrass Music Store in Asheville, NC. Clyde was proud of carrying on the tradition of the Bluegrass Gospel Jam and traditional Bluegrass Jam held every Tuesday and Friday night in Asheville. In addition to the Asheville Bluegrass scene, Clyde was well known throughout Bluegrass music across the entire US, especially in the New England area. Clyde taught Bluegrass banjo and guitar, country guitar and classical guitar at the Newton Music Conservatory in the Boston area. In addition, he played Bluegrass music with several bands in the New England area including clubs in Harvard Square. His proudest achievement was sharing his knowledge of Bluegrass and continuing the legacy of Bluegrass with all generations.
Clyde’s artistic talents went beyond music, he was a superb landscape photographer, songwriter and Limerick writer. His love of words and his vocabulary was legendary, anyone who was around Clyde for any length of time increased their vocabulary.
A Celebration of Clyde’s life will be held on Saturday, May 4, 2019, at Groce Funeral Home on Patton Avenue. Visitation will be at 2:00 p.m., service at 3:00 p.m., immediately followed by a Bluegrass jam until 8:00 p.m. All are welcomed and encouraged to bring your instruments to honor Clyde.