I’m Going Back To Old Kentucky #355

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.

  • September 20, 1969 Bill Monroe and the Blue Grass Boys appeared at The First Annual Florence State University Bluegrass Festival, Florence State University, Florence, Alabama.
  • September 20, 1992 Recording session with/for Mark O’Connor – Warner Brothers *
  • September 20, 2010 Rual Yarbrough passed away at his home in Florence, Alabama, succumbing to pulmonary fibrosis after an extended illness. He was aged 80.  **

* Bill Monroe played mandolin on the recording of Gold Rush for Mark O’Connor’s album Mark O’Connor, Heroes (Warner Brothers W 9 45257-2), released in 1993.

At the session at The Sound Emporium, Nashville, in addition to O’Connor and Monroe were Dan Crary [guitar], John Hickman [banjo], Byron Berline [fiddle] and Roy Huskey Jnr [bass].

The producer was Mark O’Connor.

** Rual Yarbrough played banjo with the Blue Grass Boys for about a couple of years from March 1969 to December 1970.

He also worked with Jimmy Martin and he played for about a year with Bobby Smith and the Boys from Shiloh just prior to his joining Bill Monroe.

Yarbrough is most well-known as a member of one of the best and busiest bluegrass bands of the early 1960s, the Dixie Gentlemen. The group, formed in 1956, recorded for several labels including United Artists and Old Homestead, for which Yarbrough also cut several solo albums also.

Yarbrough also led his own group, the Dixiemen, recording six LPs for Old Homestead during the 1970s.

His work during Nashville recording sessions, often un-credited, includes cuts by country artists such as Hank Williams Jr. and Mac Davis.

Yarbrough was a barber by trade.

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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.