Host Tom Power talks to Bluegrass Hall of Fame member Jesse McReynolds of Jim & Jesse and the Virginia Boys about his career in bluegrass.
One of the last founding fathers of bluegrass, Jesse McReynold’s story is the story of bluegrass — a music that emerged out of the country, into rural schoolhouses, onto rural radio, finding sponsorship along the way, enmeshing itself into the mainstream of American culture.
McReynolds tells the story of his grandfather, who played in the first recorded country music session, talks about being offered a gig with the Stanley Brothers, serving with the armed forces in Korea and singing alongside Charlie Louvin. He relates hunting down record deals and successes with his brother Jim, starting their own label, being sought out by counter cultural icons like the Grateful Dead and The Doors. Now nearing the age of 91, McReynolds spends some time reflecting as well, on his brother Jim’s death, his own struggles with the Opry, and how he feels about his legacy in the music. This is an icon of American music whose story isn’t often told, and we’re honored to play a part.