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Press adding nationally-known columnist

Mitch Jayne has been a story teller and writer for most of his 70 some years, first as a teacher of one room schools in the Ozarks, and later as bass player and spokesman for the Missouri Bluegrass band The Dillards, who for six years played the Darlin’ Boys on the Andy Griffith show.

Now Mitch will bring his Ozark humor and perspective to the Farmington Press each week. Starting with this edition, Jayne will provide his column &#8221Driftwood“ as an addition to our features page.

Mitch, lyricist for the Dillards, wrote such notables as &#8221Dooley,“ &#8221There Is A Time,“ and &#8221Ebo Walker.“ The Dillards’ 40-year career took bluegrass to every corner of America, plus England, Ireland, Japan and Denmark … and Mitch’s function was to provide a droll, whimsical narrative background for the Ozarks-based band.

Mitch is also known for his humorous talks which he gives throughout the state. His stories center around Ozark language (with its roots deep in Middle English), Ozark expressions, and stories told in Ozark dialect that were handed down by fox and coon hunters, family historians and other old timers. Included in his stories is his time behind the scenes on the Andy Griffith Show.

A published author, Mitch’s current book is &#8221Home Grown Stories and Home Fried Lies“, published in 2000 by Wildstone Media in St. Louis. This semi-autobiographical novel captures his wit, humor and love for the Ozarks. In the 1960s, his first published novel &#8221Forest In The Wind“ was followed a few years later by &#8221Old Fish Hawk“ that was made into a major motion picture in 1975. An audio version, published by Wildstone Media and narrated by Mitch, is available through

Mitch also writes a humor column for Today’s Farmer, the MFA magazine, and occasionally The Missouri Conservationist magazine. For 18 years he has been writing a weekly humor column for The Current Wave, his hometown newspaper in Eminence, Mo. His column also appears in the Salem News and now the Farmington Press.

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