I’m Going Back To Old Kentucky #183

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.

  • April 1, 1970 Paul Cohen died of cancer in Bryan, Texas, aged 61.  *
  • April 1, 1985 Bill Monroe announced he was getting married, for the second time.  **
  • April 1, 1997 Bertha Lee Monroe died.  ***
  • April 1, 1999 Bill Monroe – 16 Gems, a book of Monroe’s transcriptions published by Hal Leonard. ****

* Producer Paul Cohen was one of the creative forces responsible for making Nashville the country music recording capital.

After a stint at Columbia Records, Cohen spent almost 25 years at Decca, with a little more than a decade of that spent producing the company’s top country music acts such as Kitty Wells, Webb Pierce, Brenda Lee, Patsy Cline and Bobby Helms, as well as Bill Monroe.

In 1958 he transferred to Decca’s Coral subsidiary, producing pop music artists. He then launched his own company, Todd Records, recording such country acts as Pee Wee King.

Between 1964 and 1968 he was head of Kapp Records’ country division in Nashville, from where he moved to serve as head of ABC’s Nashville office. He retired in 1969 having contracted cancer.

** Bill Monroe married Della Scivers Streeter on 24 April 1985.

*** Bertha Monroe was the seventh child to J B Monroe and Melissa Vandiver Monroe. Born in July 1906, she was the closest in age to Bill Monroe.

She was married to Bernard Kurth and had two boys.

Bertha Monroe was laid to rest in Rosine Cemetery, Ohio County, on April 2, 1997.

**** 16 Gems book – ISBN: 9780793595730

The 48 page book contains authentic mandolin transcriptions of many classics: Blue Grass Breakdown, Blue Grass Special, Can’t You Hear Me Calling, Goodbye Old Pal, Heavy Traffic Ahead, I’m Going Back to Old Kentucky, It’s Mighty Dark to Travel, Kentucky Waltz, Nobody Loves Me, Old Crossroad Is Waitin’, Remember the Cross, Shine Hallelujah Shine, Summertime Is Past and Gone, Sweetheart You Done Me Wrong, Travelin’ This Lonesome Road and True Life Blues.

Share this:

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.