I’m Going Back To Old Kentucky #60

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 29, 1961 Bill Monroe and the Blue Grass Boys made their Carnegie Hall debut. The Blue Grass Boys for this show were Curtis McPeake [banjo], Jim Maynard [guitar], Benny Williams [fiddle], Buddy Spicher [fiddle] and Bessie Lee Mauldin [bass]. The show, part of an Opry package and a benefit performance for the Musicians Aid Society, was a sell-out. Also featured were Patsy Cline, Marty Robbins, Minnie Pearl, The Jordanaires, Grandpa Jones, Jim Reeves and Faron Young.

Doug Hutchens adds some interesting information about two of the personalities involved ……

“I spoke with Benny Williams and Buddy Spicher about that show. It seems Benny was playing with Porter Wagoner and Buddy was playing with Johnny and Jack when Bill called to see if they could play the date with him. They were living at Mom Upchurch’s Rooming House in Nashville. Both of them got out of their obligations (calling in sick) with Porter and Johnny and Jack and Bill flew them to New York to play Carnegie Hall. According to Benny they caught ‘the dickens’ when they got back and the band leaders found where they had been.”

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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.