top of page
mountain background only.png


Knoxville Old Time logo

Exploring Old Time Recordings and Artists 


Spencer and Rains

Art and Music


Spencer and Rains

Tricia Spencer was born and raised in Big Springs, Kansas and Howard Rains grew up in the small Texas town of Sherman. The married couple are both fiddlers, guitar-players, and singers known for their distinct twin fiddling and close-knit vocal harmonies. 

Howard and Tricia are also artists, and their artwork reflects the close ties with their music. Their 2017 album, The Skeleton Keys for example, comes with a 40 page book of color illustrations, weaving a story of each of the 17 tracks in pen and ink or watercolor.

The couple are dedicated to the preservation, performance, and sharing of old time music while preserving and building upon the traditions of their home states. Both were brought up with a deep sense of history and culture. Tricia was born into a family of farmers and old time musicians and learned the fiddle from her grandpa, Vernon Spencer. Howard was also brought up in a musical environment where singing songs and playing instruments was a very important part of family life. He cites his grandfather and stepfather as being big influences for his creativity

Howard is recognized as an authority on old Texas-style fiddling and tries to keep the traditional and rare tunes alive through his playing.

Tricia is not only a seasoned performer, known for her unique seconding on the fiddle, she is also a teacher, composer, and author. She has very recently launched a new website that “...celebrates the beauty of the fiddle and the art of fiddling,” and has published a new book, "The Fiddle Garden."

Howard and Tricia have 6 album releases, and are very active on social media and YouTube. They were recently instructors at the John C. Campbell Folk School in Brasstown, North Carolina, and will be in Mars Hill, NC June 9-15, 2024 in association with Blue Ridge Old Time Music Week. You can sign up for their monthly newsletter that features a lot of artwork, photos, and musings that don't appear on social media.

Old Beech Leaves

The Wounded Hoosier

Recorded at John C. Campbell Folk School

from the playing of Marcus Martin

Goodbye My Little Darlin'

Spotted PonySpencer and Rains
00:00 / 02:17
bottom of page