OK… so it’s 6 weeks late. But even a 46 week calendar with brilliant images of Bill Monroe is still something bluegrass fans can cherish, yes?
If so, you’re in luck. Noted Nashville photographer Charmaine Lanham has produced a beautiful calendar featuring a dozen of her Monroe images. It was intended for release late in 2011, but a number of delays prevented it from being published on schedule.
Lanham has been shooting at bluegrass events most of her life, and is dug in deep within Nashville’s music community. For years, she and her husband Marty operated The Station Inn where everyone in bluegrass performed at some point. Marty is a world class luthier and picker himself, and their daughter Heidi is married to banjo builder Steve Huber. Charmaine is connected, shall we say.
The black & white photos in her Monroe calendar range from the sublime (Bill and John Hartford jamming with a group of pickers) to the ridiculous (Bill dressed as Santa Claus singing with Ricky Skaggs). Low resolution copies can be seen on her web site, where orders for the calendar can also be placed.
Charmaine has a massive catalog of bluegrass photographs and, now that she is spending more time looking after her grandchildren than shooting festivals and concerts, she has begun getting them digitized for preservation.
I’ve had a chance to look over this huge collection, and we are hopeful of presenting more of them on Bluegrass Today over the coming months. It could take years to get even a fraction of them scanned and uploaded!