Portraits from our Past
Southwest Virginia Music

Jim and Jesse McReynolds

Music: 1940's - 1990's

Brothers Jim and Jesse McReynolds were born in Wise County, Virginia, near the town of Coeburn. The McReynolds Family had a rich history of playing mountain music. Charlie McReynolds, Jim and Jesse's grandfather, was one of the first musicians to record for RCA in Bristol in 1927. Jim and Jesse along with their band, the Virginia Boys, are known for such bluegrass hits as "The Flame of Love," "Gosh, I'll Miss You All The Time," "Cotton Mill Man," and "Paradise," to name a few. The brothers were known for their great harmony, with Jim singing tenor and Jesse bass. Early in his career, Jesse developed a very unique style of mandolin playing using "crosspickin" of fast alterations of repeated melodic patterns. Jim and Jesse have received numerous music awards including the: Country Music Hall of Fame's "Walkway of Stars," IBMA's Hall of Honor, The Virginia Country Music Hall of Fame, and Bill Monroe's Bluegrass Hall of Fame. Jim and Jesse are members of the Country Music Hall of Famea and the Grand Ole Opry. In 1997, they received the National Heritage Fellowship Award from the National Endowment for the Arts.


The Southwest Virginia Museum is a member of the American
Association of Museums, the American Association of State and Local History, and the Virginia Association of Museums.