Happy Traum’s decades-long involvement in traditional and contemporary folk music has brought him recognition as a performer, writer, editor, teacher, recording artist, and first-rate fingerstyle guitarist. Happy was a student of blues guitar legend Brownie McGhee, who was a major influence on his picking style. An active participant in the legendary Greenwich Village folk scene, Happy made his recording debut in 1963 with Bob Dylan, Phil Ochs, Pete Seeger, Gil Turner, and others, and later recorded three duets with Dylan on his Greatest Hits, Vol. 2. He has since played in concerts, clubs, and festivals throughout the U.S., Canada, Europe, Australia, and Japan, both solo and with his late brother, Artie Traum. He has released numerous CDs and has performed and/or recorded with Dylan, Levon Helm, John Sebastian, Larry Campbell, Chris Smither, Maria Muldaur, Eric Andersen, Rory Block, Allen Ginsberg, and many other major figures in the folk music world.
As one of America’s best-known guitar instructors, Happy has taught at major guitar camps, clinics, and workshops throughout the country. He is the author of more than a dozen best-selling guitar instruction books and has written numerous articles for leading music publications. As the co-owner (with Jane Traum) of Homespun Tapes, Happy has produced more than 500 music lessons on DVDs, books, and CDs with some of the world’s top artists.