Bill Monroe

Date: 1993 November 18
Length: 85 min.
Call Number: OHC192


Pioneer bluegrass performer. Born September 13, 1911. Died September 9, 1996. Full name: William Smith Monroe. Career active 1920s-1990s. Known as the Father of Bluegrass. Recognized as a leading force in establishing bluegrass as a country music style. During 1920s-1930s performed with his brother, Charlie Monroe, as the Monroe Brothers. Late 1930 began career with his new band, the Blue Grass Boys. Recorded for RCA, Columbia, and Decca/MCA. Member, International Bluegrass Hall of Honor. Member, Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame. Member, Country Music Hall of Fame®.

Interview Summary

1993 November 18
(1 hour, 25 minutes)
Legendary bluegrass performer Bill Monroe talks about his career during the 1940s and 1950s. Discussion includes his early mandolin; performers he worked with; experiences as a tent show performer; the impact of World War II on country music; the stories behind some of his songs, including “Goodbye Old Pal,” “Wicked Path of Sin,” “Can’t You Hear Me Calling,” “Little Georgia Rose,” and “I’m Blue, I’m Lonesome”; working with song publishers; memories from working with Hank Williams; and examples of the songs he performed during these years.