Henry Horenstein, Ralph Stanley

Henry Horenstein

Ralph Stanley at Home, Coburn, Virginia, 1974

Among fans of bluegrass music, Stanley stands a notch below the mighty Bill Monroe in importance and popularity. Starting out in 1947 with his brother Carter, as the Stanley Brothers, he regrouped after Carter's death in 1966, becoming a favorite on the emerging folk circuit. This new audience helped preserve the band and the unique "high and lonesome" Stanley sound. In 2001, "Dr. Ralph" won the Grammy Award for best male vocal performance for his "O Death," a traditional tune from the soundtrack of the film O Brother Where Art Thou? Ralph was seventy-five years old and had never won a Grammy before. In fact, he had never even had a hit record.

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