James Alan Shelton, longtime lead guitarist for Ralph Stanley’s Clinch Mountain Boys, was presented with a Carter Stanley Memorial Blue Ridge Guitar at Stanley’s Memorial Weekend Festival on Saturday May 23rd. The guitar was given to him on stage in appreciation for fifteen years of service to the band as guitarist, road manager and part time booking agent. Making the presentation was Richard Keldsen of Saga Musical Instruments, James’ boss Dr. Ralph Stanley and also the children of the late Carter Stanley: Carter Lee Stanley, Billy Stanley and Jeanie Stanley Allinder. Well known Stanley Brothers historian Gary Reid of Copper Creek Records also received a Carter Stanley Guitar and the legendary George Shuffler was presented with his own “George Shuffler Model”, also built by Blue Ridge.
Following the festival, Ralph and the CMB’s boarded a plane for England and played three sold out shows in London’s Barbican Theater, The Bath International Music Festival and The Manchester University Student Union.