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Jimmy Martin

December 16, 1993 OHC182 195 min.


Bluegrass performer. Born August 10, 1927. Died May 14, 2005. Full name: James Henry Martin. Guitarist and lead singer for Bill Monroe’s Blue Grass Boys, 1949-1954. Successful performer, songwriter, and recording artist. His recording credits include the bluegrass standards “Rock Hearts,” “Sophronie,” “Hold Whatcha Got,” “Widow Maker,” and “The Sunny Side of the Mountain.” Member, International Bluegrass Music Hall of Honor.

Interview Summary

1993 December 16
(3 hours, 15 minutes)
Bluegrass legend Jimmy Martin participates in an interview for the Country Music Foundation-produced The Music of Bill Monroe from 1936-1994 (MCA, 1994). Discussion includes his childhood and early musical influences; his start as a performer and memories from his early career; his audition with Bill Monroe and joining the Blue Grass Boys; experiences working and recording with Monroe; performing with Hank Williams; the development of his guitar style; the decision to leave Monroe; working with the Osborne Brothers; working with Paul Williams and J. D. Crowe; working on the Louisiana Hayride; highlights from his many recording sessions; memories of Jimmy Martin & the Sunny Mountain Boys; his songwriting; working on the Grand Ole Opry; experiences traveling with Monroe; comments on Monroe’s career and influence; and comments on the growth of bluegrass.

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