I’m Going Back To Old Kentucky #38

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.

  • November 7, 1909 Ernest ‘Ernie’ Newton born Hartford, Connecticut. Newton, a session musician, played bass during some recording sessions starting from March 17, 1951, ending with that on December 31, 1954, amounting to a dozen sessions in all.

Newton anchored the rhythm section on Kentucky Waltz, My Carolina Sunshine Girl, Walking in Jerusalem, The Little Girl and the Dreadful Snake, Get up John, White House Blues, I’m Working on a Building, My Little Georgia Rose, Blue Moon of Kentucky and Wheel Hoss, to mention just a sample.

Also he is credited as the bass player on a number of recordings by the Stanley Brothers (on their Columbia material), Jim Eanes (Decca), Flatt & Scruggs, Mac Wiseman and the Osborne Brothers as well as a host of country music’s big recording artists, including Hank Williams, Ray Price, Carl Smith Kitty Wells, Marty Robbins and Porter Wagoner.

Here is a video of Bill Monroe and the Blue Grass Boys singing one of the songs that Newton helped to record …… Blue Moon of Kentucky.

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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.