Welcome to State Of The Union, appearing each month in bluegrass now magazine! This column provides the spouses of professional bluegrass musicians with a forum in which they can share their insights, observations, and experience with fans and other bluegrass spouses.

October 2003: Meredith Bub Talks About HER JOB

Meredith Bub should have been the happiest woman in the world.

She was working for a prestigious Nashville law firm. She was newly married to one of the nicest guys in town, bassist Mike Bub of the Del McCoury band. She and Mike had a lovely new home; they'd closed on it the month they got married.

The problem was her job. She'd been thrilled to accept the position a year earlier, but the scope had changed completely. “I wasn't working for the same person, and I was miserable. One night Mike said to me, 'Too bad you didn't take the job with Alison last year!'”

Alison Krauss had needed a caregiver for her son Sam the year before; Krauss' close childhood friend, Amy Baker, had helped with the search. “When I moved to Nashville, I met Amy right off the bat, and we hit it off,” says Meredith. “I really like kids, and she thought I might be good for the job.”

At the time, Meredith hadn't wanted to travel, or to be away from Mike. Now, a year later, Alison and Mike were both getting ready to set off on the Down From The Mountain tour with their respective bands. Meredith went to sleep that night musing on the irony, wishing she'd accepted Alison's offer.

“The very next day, I ran into Alison at lunch! We talked about it. She said, 'Oh! I still need somebody!' So that was it.” Within a week, Meredith gave her notice at the law firm. “Mike and I were the luckiest people on the tour, because we got to see each other every day! Nobody else got to do that.”

When the journey ended, Meredith stayed on as Sam's companion. Four-year-old Sam is Alison's son from her former marriage to musician Pat Bergeson. “He's awesome! He wants to be a rock and roll drummer. It's almost shocking how good he is. He's been fascinated by drums since he was a year old.”

Union Station percussionist Larry Atamanuik has been a terrific mentor for the child, Meredith adds. “He is such a nice person, and Sam loves to hang out with him. At this point, he doesn't take formal lessons, but he plays all the time! He has his own kit, but he'll drum on anything--if I'm holding him, he'll drum on my shoulder! He's just constantly keeping a beat.”

When Alison, Sam and Meredith are on the road, they are joined on the bus by Union Station banjo player Ron Block. “We talk a lot about God and spirituality. It's just fun, after a show, to hunker down and talk about that for a while. Ron is a really spiritual guy, and he's taught me a lot over the past year.”

She is delighted by the friendships she's made with the members of Union Station. “They're great people, every one of them. Everybody has a good disposition. Professionalism comes so naturally to them-that's really neat to watch.”

The excitement of touring with one of the hottest bands in America hasn't worn off yet. “Every day, it's a new town and a new adventure, getting to see a lot of things that not a lot of people get to see. I got to meet James Taylor! And Dolly Parton! Gosh, who else? It's ridiculous, but it happens so frequently that I kind of forget now.”

Meredith reports that she and Mike hope to have a child in the next five years or so. “Whether we have our own baby, or adopt-whatever we do-I see myself being with my child just the same as Alison stays with Sam. She's the best mother I've ever seen. I've learned so much from her, as far as being a good mom, and just being selfless. She is utterly patient, interested in every aspect, and she listens to everything he has to say. What he says is valued. It's prepared me for when I do become a mom. I'm gonna be great at it, because Alison is a great teacher.”

If you see the Bubs out in the world this month, wish them a happy anniversary-they celebrate their third on October 14th. “I got a good one,” Meredith happily says of Mike. “There's just a whole lot of trust and love and support. Mike is really funny, and he's very even-tempered and kind, all the time. I was especially lucky!”

Please contact Caroline Wright
if you're the spouse of a professional bluegrass musician,
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