I’m Going Back to Old Kentucky #11

From October 1, 2010 through to the end of September 2011, we will, each day, celebrate the life of Bill Monroe by sharing information about him and those people who are associated with his life and music career. This information will include births and deaths; recording sessions; single, LP and CD release dates; and other interesting tidbits. Richard F. Thompson is responsible for the research and compilation of this information. We invite readers to share any tidbits, photos or memories you would like us to include.

  • October 11, 1944 – Clyde Garry Thurmond born Snead, Alabama. Thurmond was guitarist/lead vocalist for the Blue Grass Boys for a brief time during the summer of 1964. He founded the Warrior River Boys and the Flint River Boys.
  • October 11, 1956Blaine Sprouse born Martinsburg, West Virginia. Sprouse played many dates, often playing twin fiddle with Kenny Baker, as an additional Blue Grass Boy after joining James Monroe’s band the Midnight Ramblers in 1976. Also he is featured on the Body and Soul album.
  • October 11, 1971 – Bill Monroe was inducted into the Nashville Songwriters’ Foundation Hall Of Fame at the organization’s banquet and presentation ceremony.
  • October 11, 2004 – Tommy Vaden died at Beverly Health Care in Springfield, Tennessee, after a long battle with prostate cancer. He was aged 79. *

Blaine Sprouse went on to become an attorney after his time with the Monroes, and now lives in southern California.

* Vaden filled-in playing bass during the Christmas period 1958. He played fiddle on some of Jim & Jesse’s Capital recordings (1952–1955) and on a few sessions for Mac Wiseman. However, he is most acclaimed for his contribution to the creation of Hank Snow’s signature sound, witness the kick-off to Snow’s hit recording I’m Movin On.

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About the Author

Richard Thompson

Richard F. Thompson is a long-standing free-lance writer specialising in bluegrass music topics. A two-time Editor of British Bluegrass News, he has been seriously interested in bluegrass music since about 1970. As well as contributing to that magazine, he has, in the past 30 plus years, had articles published by Country Music World, International Country Music News, Country Music People, Bluegrass Unlimited, MoonShiner (the Japanese bluegrass music journal) and Bluegrass Europe. He wrote the annotated series I'm On My Way Back To Old Kentucky, a daily memorial to Bill Monroe that culminated with an acknowledgement of what would have been his 100th birthday, on September 13, 2011.