I’m Going Back To Old Kentucky #132

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.

  • February 9, 1956 Dwight Dillman was born in Peru, Indiana. *
  • February 9, 1976 Recording Session – During three evening sessions at Fireside Recording Studio, James and Bill Monroe recorded 10 numbers for Atteiram Records. Other musicians in the studio were Vic Jordan [banjo], Gerald Sullivan [bass] and three fiddle players; Joe Stuart, Kenny Baker and Jim Brock, each of whom was present at various times during the three sessions. **

* Dwight Dillman worked as a Blue Grass Boy, playing banjo, for about three months from July to September 1974, replacing Jim Moratto. Dillman was replaced by Bob Black. There weren’t any recording sessions during Dillman’s tenure.

In 1998 Dillman, then a successful businessman, purchased the Brown County Jamboree park from James Monroe and renamed it Bill Monroe Memorial Music Park and Campground.

Since then he has made major improvements to the campground has brought the bluegrass festival back to the prominence it enjoyed under Bill Monroe.

The park is currently for sale, but Dillman is keen to sell to a person or organization that would ensure that the festivals continue and that they retain the historical traditions established through the years.

The town of Nashville, Brown County, Indiana, proclaimed September 26, 2008, as Dwight Dillman Day for his work in maintaining and improving the Bean Blossom site.

During that same year Dwight Dillman was named the Bluegrass Promoter of the Year by SPBGMA.

He keeps active by playing with the Bean Blossom Cut-Ups.

**  The sessions were over three consecutive days, February 9, 10 and 11, commencing at 6pm daily.

All were for a tribute album by James Monroe, Sings Songs of Memory Lane of his Uncle Charlie Monroe (Atteiram API-L-1532), released later in 1976.

Charlie Monroe passed away on September 27, 1975.

Track listing – Down In the Willow Garden, Bringing In the Georgia Mail, The Red Rocking Chair, When The Angels Carry Me Home, Down Memory Lane, I’m Old Kentucky Bound, I’m Coming Back But I Don’t Know When, Rolling In My Sweet Baby’s Arms, What Became of That Beautiful Picture and It’s Only A Phonograph Record.

Four tracks – Bringing In the Georgia Mail, Down Memory Lane, I’m Coming Back But I Don’t Know When and When The Angels Carry Me Home – from this album were re-released on the album Blue Grass Special Memories (Raintree RR – 599D)

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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.