Billy Robinson

Date: 1998 August 04
Length: 131 min.
Call Number: OHC242


Steel guitarist. Born August 6, 1931. Career most active late 1940s-early 1950s. Backed Red Foley on the Grand Ole Opry and participated in the 1949 Opry troupe tour of U. S. military bases in Germany and Austria. A successful session musician, he can be heard on numerous recordings, including “Candy Kisses” (recorded by George Morgan, 1949), and “Chattanoogie Shoe Shine Boy” (recorded by Red Foley, 1950). Member, Steel Guitar Hall of Fame.

Interview Summary

1998 August 4
(2 hours, 11 minutes)
Steel guitar player Billy Robinson talks about his career, focusing on the late 1940s and early 1950s. Discussion includes his start with Red Foley in 1948; his musical influences; his first band, the Eagle Rangers; his work at WSM-Nashville; members of the WSM staff band; his participation in the 1949 Grand Ole Opry tour of Europe and memories of tour performers, including Red Foley, Hank Williams, Roy Acuff, and Little Jimmy Dickens; his work with different performers, including work for Zeke Clements, James “Goober” Buchanan, Red Foley, and Hank Williams; his first appearance on the Opry; his recording work with several artists, including Red Foley, George Morgan, and Webb Pierce, and his career outside of the music industry.