Skip Ogden passes

Charles "Skip" OgdenCharles Ogden, of Wilmington, NC, known to friends as both Charlie and Skip, died on September 5 in a Wilmington area hospice center. He had been diagnosed with stage 4 liver cancer earlier this summer, which had also spread to his lungs, and it progressed quickly over the past two months. He was 60 years old when he died.

Skip was an early advocate and adherent of putting bluegrass music online. His company, iBest, developed and hosted web sites for many familiar bluegrass artists, businesses, and festivals. AcuTab Publications, Del McCoury, Jerry Douglas, Scott Vestal, and the Grey Fox festival are just a few of the sites which he helped design and maintain.

By 1994, Ogden’s own site was online promoting the music, and his expertise in marketing, ecommerce, database programming, and business development was utilized by many in the bluegrass world during a time when such knowledge was more closely held than it is today. Skip’s easy manner and no-nonsense communication skills saved many a grasser from dead ends and blind alleys in the then-new world of online enterprise.

As both a friend and associate, he was very helpful during the early days of The Bluegrass Blog, which has since morphed into Bluegrass Today. We remember Skip’s generosity with his skills and dexterity as a programmer, as do his many other friends in the bluegrass world.

Charlie Ogden with Barbara Winderbaum at MerleFest 2015Though he made several attempts to learn to play, Skip remained more of a fan than a player, though he continued to follow bluegrass music closely.

His close companion, Barbara Winderbaum, tells us that she watched the cancer rapidly claim his life. In fact, it was she who found Ogden after he fell in his home on August 31. He was taken to the hospital and then moved to hospice care for pain management.

She described him as we remember him. “He was the most attentive, considerate and loving man I ever knew. He is greatly missed.”

R.I.P., Skip Ogden.

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About the Author

John Lawless

John had served as primary author and editor for The Bluegrass Blog from its launch in 2006 until being folded into Bluegrass Today in September of 2011. He continues in that capacity here, managing a strong team of columnists and correspondents.