The music world lost a legend yesterday with the passing of Dr. Ralph Stanley. He has been one of my favorite people for years. He lived a long, productive life, but it is still sad that he is gone forever. I am reposting the blog I wrote on his birthday on February 25, 2016.
Dr. Ralph Stanley turns 89 years old today. He started singing and picking banjo professionally in 1946 with his brother, Carter, and the Clinch Mountain Boys. After Carter's death in 1966, his fans urged him to continue his music with the Clinch Mountain boys, and he decided to give it a try. I'm so glad he did. He has been pickin' and singin' for more than sixty years now.
In the year 2000, Dr. Ralph's music was featured in the movie, O Brother, Where art Thou, which introduced his music to millions that had not heard it before. In 2002, he won a Grammy for his song, O Death. In 2006, he received the Living Legend award from the Library of Congress and National Metal of Arts given by President George W. Bush.
Hub and I saw him performing with his grandson and band last July. The crowd loved him. Happy Birthday, Dr. Ralph.