Flatt & Scruggs & Stanley Bros 'Selected Sides 1947-1953' 4CDs JSP-7724-4CD
Tennessee-born Lester Flatt dropped out of school early, taking mill jobs and playing music in his spare time. A fan of The Monroes, Lester tried the banjo before settling on the guitar. By 1939 he had joined the Charlie Scott Harmonisers. In 1943 Charlie Monroe asked Lester to join his band. Finding touring irksome Lester left the band - only to be offered a spot in Bill Monroe's band as guitarist and lead singer. Earl Scruggs was soon to be recruited.North Carolinan Earl Scruggs, ten years younger than Flatt, had a similar upbringing. At the age of ten he could pick a three-fingered roll on the banjo and it was not long before he was playing on the radio. After leaving high school he worked in textile mills. By 1945, as a member of 'Lost' John Miller's band he appeared on Radio WSM Nashville. The call from Bill Monroe soon followed. The partnership between Flatt and Scruggs revolutionised Bluegrass. Inevitably, Flatt & Scruggs formed their own band - The Foggy Mountain Boys. Bill never forgave them The Stanley Brothers grew up during the Depression. The family was musical and other musical influences came from records and the radio. Precocious musically, the brothers started early - Carter on guitar, Ralph on banjo. A planned musical career was halted by WW2. After discharge, they joined to form The Stanley Brothers and the Clinch Mountain Boys. A major break was to appear on WCYB's popular 'Farm And Fun Time' show. They were on their way. The Stanley's style at this time was 'straight-ahead' old-timey. However, mandolinist 'Pee Wee' Lambert was a fan of Bill Monroe. At his prompting one of the Clinch Mountain Boys first recordings was a version of Molly And Tenbrooks, a song featured on radio by Monroe but not yet issued on record. The record sold well -resulting in a feud between the Stanleys and Bill Monroe. There was no greater compliment than to be at odds with Bill. They adopted much of Monroe's Bluegrass style and never looked back.