Portraits from our Past
Southwest Virginia Music

Dr. Ralph Stanley &
the Clinch Mountain Boys

Music: 1940's - Present

After Carter passed away, Ralph Stanley reformed the Clinch Mountain Boys, continuing to play and record. His tenor voice and driving banjo playing has made him a highly respected bluegrass artist. Stanley can count Ricky Skaggs, Keith Whitley, and Larry Sparks among his past Clinch Mountain Boys. Jack Cooke of Norton, Virginia, has been with the band over 31 years. In 1976, Stanley was awarded an honorary doctorate degree in music and is often referred to as Dr. Ralph Stanley. He has received several Grammy nominations and won his first Grammy at age 75 for his work on the "O Brother, Where Art Thou?" soundtrack. He is a member of the Grand Ole Opry and was the first recipient of the National Endowment for the Humanities "Traditional American Music Award." He has won many bluegrass awards and, in 2000, was the recipient of the Library of Congress's "living Legend" medal. After Stanley's Carnegie Hall performance, Rolling Stone Magazine called him a "master performer without an expiration date." Stanley lives in Dickenson County.


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.