“When I was growing up, we had some 45s and 78s around the house of Flatt and Scruggs, Bill Monroe and the Stanley Brothers, and I used to play them all the time.
And my sister – who’s four or five years older than me – well, I know that the first album that she bought was the Beatles, their first album, and we used to listen to them a lot.
But the first album that I can remember actually going in and buying myself was a Flatt and Scruggs record. Of course, in the town in eastern Kentucky where I grew up, the stores where we bought groceries didn’t sell music. You had to go 25 or 30 miles to Grayson and Louise, Kentucky – the county seat of Lawrence County – to buy records.
But I also remember that I happened to be up there in Columbus, Ohio with my dad one time visiting some relatives or something, and we stopped into a music store downtown on High Street. I just went ballistic, totally nuts. I was just begging him, ‘Dad, can we buy this?’
At the time, albums were five or six dollars apiece, which was a pretty good little chunk. But I remember him buying me eight or ten Stanley Brothers albums. That’s all I bought. I didn’t buy anybody else’s records. Nothing but Carter and Ralph’s.”
Ricky Skaggs and his band Kentucky Thunder headline the Grey Fox Bluegrass Festival at Walsh Farm in Oak Hill on Saturday, July 18. The fest runs from Thursday-Sunday, July 16-19 featuring such performers as Marty Stuart & His Fabulous Superlatives, the David Bromberg Quartet, the Del McCoury Band, the Tim O’Brien Band, the Gibson Brothers, King Wilkie, Crooked Still and more.