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Thread: 'Something' stuck to Bill Monroe's Mandolin headstock.

  1. #1
    Registered User Ivan Kelsall's Avatar
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    Default 'Something' stuck to Bill Monroe's Mandolin headstock.

    If i remember correctly,quite a while ago,there was a bit of discussion regarding a piece of 'something' stuck to the side of Bill Monroe's mandoldin headstock.

    In Tom Ewing's new book,he tells of the time that Lamar Grier,Bill Monroe's banjo player at the time,bought a pack of socks. The pack had an adhesive price tag on it, Lamar peeled it off & placed it in the centre of BM's mandolin headstock. Apparently BM was quite amused by this & left it there. It can be seen quite clearly in the attached pic.

    Maybe at some later date,BM peeled it of the front of the headstock & stuck it on the side ?,
    Ivan
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    Kelley Mandolins Skip Kelley's Avatar
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    Default Re: 'Something' stuck to Bill Monroe's Mandolin headstock.

    Ivan, it seems like I read somewhere that it is a price sticker.

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    Registered User Ivan Kelsall's Avatar
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    Default Re: 'Something' stuck to Bill Monroe's Mandolin headstock.

    Hi Skip - I can imagine BM being amused at his mandolin being priced the same as a pack of socks !,
    Ivan
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    Stelling Bellflower BANJO
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    Ellis DeLuxe "A" style.

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    Default Re: 'Something' stuck to Bill Monroe's Mandolin headstock.

    There was a "thing" among bluegrass players about 50 years ago and they had price stickers on their instruments. It was a kind of inside joke. Banjo players did it too.

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    Registered User DavidKOS's Avatar
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    Default Re: 'Something' stuck to Bill Monroe's Mandolin headstock.

    Quote Originally Posted by RobBob View Post
    There was a "thing" among bluegrass players about 50 years ago and they had price stickers on their instruments. It was a kind of inside joke. Banjo players did it too.
    Other entertainers used the price tag too.


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    Registered User Timbofood's Avatar
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    Default Re: 'Something' stuck to Bill Monroe's Mandolin headstock.

    Ivan, that was the first Bill Monroe album I owned, Ive still got it!
    Timothy F. Lewis
    "If brains was lard, that boy couldn't grease a very big skillet" J.D. Clampett

  9. #7
    Registered User Ivan Kelsall's Avatar
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    Default Re: 'Something' stuck to Bill Monroe's Mandolin headstock.

    Hi all - 'Memory lapse up-date' - Bill Keith was the culprit,NOT Lamar Grier- my apologies !.

    Tim - If my memory (memory LOL !!!) serves me correctly,it was my first Monroe LP as well,bought around 1964,i also still have mine. I bought one for the mandolin player in my band who also happened to be a seriously good banjo player - in fact,the first i ever saw. He phoned me the following day,to ask if i'd heard Bill Keith playing 'Sailor's Hornpipe',i hadn't ,so when he'd hung up,i went upstairs where i had a record deck & listened to it.Needless to say i couldn't understand 'how' it was played. A few years later,myself & the 2 guys i was playing with at the time,were backing Bill Clifton at a folk club gig. I asked Bill if it was played 'finger style' or with a pick ?. Bill told me that it was a new finger style technique. I was completely baffled at how it could be done. I did learn to play ''Santa Clause'' from that LP,& had a laugh down at English Park,Owensboro,in 1992,when i was playing ''the banjo that got away''. Bill Keith himself was leaning against the side of the stall where Elderly Instruments had a display,smoking a cigarette. I was playing a pre-war Gibson TB6 'conversion' that Elderly had on display,& seeing BK standing there,i played 'Santa Clause' which got a smile & a nod from Mr.Keith. I had met Bill Keith a few times on his visits to the UK.

    That TB6 was old,dusty & a tad tarnished.The banjo head was grimy & the strings a tad more than tarnished - but,it rang like a bell. When i'd finished playing it,there was a queue waiting to play it. I went back in the afternoon intending to buy it - Too late !!, It's still the very finest banjo i've ever heard - to my ears,the banjo equivalent of Bill Monroe's 'Loar' -it was 'that good',
    Ivan
    Weber F-5 'Fern'.
    Lebeda F-5 "Special".
    Stelling Bellflower BANJO
    Tokai - 'Tele-alike'.
    Ellis DeLuxe "A" style.

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