I’m Going Back To Old Kentucky #311

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.

  • August 7, 1977 Bill Monroe and the Blue Grass Boys shared the billing with Doc and Merle Watson for a show at The Ionia Free Fair, Ionia, Michigan.
  • August 7, 1980 Concert at the White House – Bill Monroe sang Uncle Pen, Blue Moon of Kentucky, Raw Hide, Rabbit In The Log (Feast Here Tonight) and Paddy On The Turnpike. Monroe was accompanied by Wayne Lewis [guitar], Kenny Baker [fiddle], Butch Robins [banjo] and Mark Hembree [bass]. **

* They all stood aside for a duet performance by Bill Monroe and Doc Watson of Rabbit In The Log (Feast Here Tonight) and Paddy On The Turnpike.

The concert was recorded by the Smithsonian and released in video format by Homespun Tapes (VD-MON-MN01) and the recording of Paddy On The Turnpike was included on the album Bill Monroe and Doc Watson: Live Duet Recordings 1963-1980, Off the Record Vol. 2 (Smithsonian Folkways SF 40064).

The performance of Blue Moon of Kentucky, in the presence of President and Mrs Carter, was captured on this black and white video.

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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.