News Round-up: Jesse McReynolds Works on Grateful Dead Tribute

  • Jesse Lester McReynolds – mandolin trailblazer,  inductee into the Country Music Hall of Fame’s “Walkway of Stars”, the Virginia Country Music Hall of Fame, the International Bluegrass Music Association’s Hall of Honor, Bill Monroe’s Bluegrass Hall of Fame, long-time Grand Ole Opry member and multiple Grammy nominee and award winner is currently recording a thirteen -song tribute to The Grateful Dead. Jesse McReynolds & Friends – Songs Of  The Grateful Dead – A Tribute to Jerry Garcia & Robert Hunter will be released on Woodstock Records on October 5, 2010.
  • Julie Roberts will bring attention to the gradual resurgence of  Nashville since the devastating flood of May 2010. The four-part series, “Road to Recovery” will air on ABC’s Good Morning America Tuesday, August 24 through Friday, August 27, and will also include reporting on Haiti, five months after their devastating earthquake, and from the gulf region, five years after Hurricane Katrina. For more information, visit
  • Nathan Rabin’s excellent series, Nashville Or Bust, covers the legendary honky-tonk hero Hank Thompson.
  • No news on Taylor Swift’s new video, album or hair style. Thanks!

Country Singer Hank Thompson Dies at 82

Another country great has left us. Hank Thompson died from lung cancer late Tuesday at his home in the Fort Worth suburb of Keller. Thompson died just days after canceling his tour and announcing his retirement.

The last show Thompson played was Oct. 8 in his native Waco. That day was declared “Hank Thompson Day” by Gov. Rick Perry and Waco Mayor Virginia DuPuy.

Fans loved Thompson’s distinctive voice and his musical style, which drew on the Western swing first developed in the 1930s by fellow Texan Bob Wills. Thompson was named to the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1989.

His first hit record was “Whoa, Sailor” in 1946. That year, he started a band called the Brazos Valley Boys, which won Billboard magazine’s touring band of the year award 14 consecutive times.

A “celebration of life,” open to fans and friends, will be held Nov. 14 at Billy Bob’s Texas, a Fort Worth honky-tonk.

Survivors include his wife, Ann. He had no children.