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Research Guides

Bob Nelson Collection of Folk Music: Dave Spence

A guide to the artists and recordings represented in the Bob Nelson Collection of Folk Music.

About Dave Spence

Dave Spence immigrated from Belfast Ireland when he was 19. He became a US citizen and earned his teaching degree from San Jose State College, in California. He became a 6th grade science teacher in public school. He married Joann Spence, and they subsequently adopted son Aaron Spence.
Dave was a superb performer, played guitar and five string banjo. He has a very large repertoire of songs he brought with him from Ireland. He performed for many years at "The Drinking Gourd" in San Francisco. He was known for his great entertaining stories and song introductions. He was killed while flying a "Benson Gyro-copter" he had built from a kit, at the Santa Rosa airport in 1966.

(Bob Nelson, September 2012)

David Spence | "Little Land" (UW Nelson NRR1)

David Spence | Kilgary Mountain (Whiskey In The Jar) (UW Nelson NRR2)