Banjo Man: The Musical Journey of Earl Scruggs
December 02, 2005 - June 18, 2006
The cameo exhibit surveyed the life and career of banjo guru Earl Scruggs. The exhibit also honored Scruggs’ wife and business partner, Louise Certain Scruggs.
A Grammy-winning member of the Country Music Hall of Fame and the International Bluegrass Music Association’s Hall of Honor, a recipient of the National Medal of the Arts, a Hollywood Walk of Fame honoree and venerated as one of the 20th century’s greats, Earl Scruggs is a true American original.
The exhibit traces Scruggs’ life and career from early childhood in rural North Carolina through his years with Bill Monroe, the evolution of Flatt & Scruggs and the Foggy Mountain Boys and the adventurous folk-rock of the Earl Scruggs Revue. The Banjo Man exhibit is accompanied by related publications and a series of public programs including interviews, film screenings, concerts and panel discussions.
The exhibit also demonstrates how Louise Scruggs’ understanding of music and musical trends, coupled with her formidable business acumen, allowed her to steer her husband’s career in the direction of ever-widening audiences. In 1955, she began booking and managing the Flatt & Scruggs show and continues to manage her husband’s career today. She was the first woman in country music to assume these roles, and she set new standards for the industry.
Museum curators use instruments, costumes, vintage photographs, original art, archival video, show posters and music to tell the story of a modern master who was nurtured in a musical family as a child and who has now introduced his own sons to the same tradition.