“To me, bluegrass is really the country music. It was meant for country people.” ~Bill Monroe
Bill Monroe, bluegrass musician and songwriter, was born on September 13, 1911 in Jerusalem Ridge, Kentucky. He was one of eight children and learned to play the guitar and mandolin at the age of 9 years old. His birth name was William Smith Monroe.
Bill Monroe formed the band known as The Bluegrass Boys in the 1930’s. They performed on the Grand Old Opry radio show many times giving birth to the genre of music that came to be known as “bluegrass.”
Bill Monroe is famous for the song, Blue Moon of Kentucky and today it is the Kentucky state song. Kentucky Waltz is another of his compositions.
He was inducted into the International Bluegrass Music Hall of Honor in 1991. He was presented the National Medal of Arts in 1995 by President Bill Clinton.
Bill Monroe died September 9, 1996 in Springfield, Tennessee.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, BILL MONROE! KENTUCKY LOVES YOU AND YOUR MUSIC!
You can read more about Bill Monroe, his life and his music here: Bill Monroe Biography and Bill Monroe, Bluegrass Museum.