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Susquehanna String Theory

An eclectic blend of acoustic instruments and vocals

a repertoire that ranges from Celtic to old-time to bluegrass

Al Lumpkin was raised in a musical family. His grandfather directed the church choir, where Al sang his first public solo at the age of 5. His father attended Julliard, appeared in the Broadway cast of “Peter Pan,” served as church choirmaster, sang operatic roles and taught voice. Al’s mother was an accomplished popular and jazz pianist. Al began playing guitar during college. As a senior, he became minister of his first parish.

He played and sang as a part of his ministry, often performing folk music in churches and coffeehouses.

After becoming certified to teach Clinical Pastoral Education, Al established the Geisinger Medical Center Spiritual Care Department and its School of Pastoral Care, where he served as director for 27 years. Since his retirement from Geisinger in 2002, he has continued part-time ministry at the Benton and Raven Creek Presbyterian Churches.

Al’s first musical love centers around lead and harmony vocals. His guitar was a vehicle for the songs he wanted to sing. In recent years, the music has drawn him into playing autoharp, mandolin, and bouzouki, with limited ventures into playing “clawhammer” banjo and bass. As a part of his ministry, Al frequently provides music during worship services both in solo performance and with his wife, Jean. He plays some bluegrass music with friends - he and Jean have performed at the OATS Bluegrass Festival for the past 13 years. Most often he performs with Susquehanna String Theory, and that group of friends is more than a musical group - it’s an important community of “fellow travelers.”