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Roy Clark and Bobby Thompson

“Bury Me Beneath the Willow” Bobby Thompson Fan Club on From Franklin, Tennessee. One of country musics best known studio musicians of the 60′s, 70′s and 80′s. One of the first chromatic (or melodic) style banjo players. Influenced many others. Early 60′s, worked with Jim and Jesse. Was a member of the group Area Code 615. Played theme music to Hee Haw, and also played banjo on movie soundtracks: Smokey and the Bandit, Coal Miners Daughter, Urban Cowboy, many others. Played on hit songs by such artists as Johnny Cash, Marty Robbins, Jim & Jesse, Hank Snow, Tammy Wynette, Elvis Presley, Carl Perkins, Jerry Lee Lewis, Loretta Lynn, Bill Monroe, Dolly Parton, Perry Como, Eddy Arnold, Les Paul, Connie Smith, Merle Haggard, Trini Lopez, the Monkees, Olivia Newton-John, Melanie, Jimmy Buffett, Dr Hook, Leon Russell, Neil Young and many others.
Video Rating: 4 / 5

posted by in Variety Shows and have Comments (25)

25 Responses to “Roy Clark and Bobby Thompson”

  1. paulbalika1 says:

    Hi Bobby – I played in a band back when you and your dad met at a music shop in Aurora Il. – I bought one of your old guitars – a green Gretch – if you are the same Bobby – hope you find the videos – the Bob & Bobby father and son team were great – believe they performed on “the Barn Dance” tv show in the 60s? I am 60 yrs old now and have been trying to get a video of these two from an old tv show – no luck yet.

  2. bigshowracing says:

    Its an awesome performance. It is funny trhough how all the folks in the back are all out of sync with the clapping….LOL

  3. bergerfry says:

    Damn, that’s good stuff

  4. MrLongtimegone says:

    I wonder why Bobby never got the credit he should have got when he was playing .He was so far over the other banjo players at the time. I think they were scared to turn him loose he was great . I loved his playing

  5. Pickinbuddy says:

    @MerlynSchutterle There is an on-line article about Bobby’s Baldwin banjo–when he passed away, he left the banjo to a protege and close friend, who was from Germany and who also played. I think if you type in “Bobby Thompson’s Banjo” that article will turn up. It’s a great article and it reveals info on all the modifications Bobby made to the banjo over the years.

  6. Pickinbuddy says:

    @boblackey1 Don is a super picker too….Earl Scruggs is like Andre Segovia; and Don Reno is like Les Paul. Don is probably the ONLY 5 string banjo player who knew how to play with “HUMOR” in his playing–think about that! Don’s playing became instantly recognizeable–as soon as he went into a ‘riff’….and I’d love the way he’d ‘set up the audience’ for it–he’d get this mischievous look in his eyes and then fire off a single string riff that would just blow your mind!, and leave ya chuckling.

  7. Pickinbuddy says:

    @KittraKittra Yes indeed–I bought this CD and it IS WONDERFUL….everything from Jim & Jesse’s “Diesel On My Tail” to chromatic MASTERPIECES like “Katy Hill” to some fabulous ‘concept treatments’ like “Foxfire” and “Devil Dance”. The name of this CD is “Thompson Picks”. As for Jesse McReynolds and Bobby Thompson–now THAT’S a musical match made in heaven–two of the best musical minds in Bluegrass….who STILL knew how to KEEP it Bluegrass!
    God Bless you all…
    Bill Turner

  8. boblackey1 says:

    @Pickinbuddy Yeah. I grew up in Roanoke and Don Reno played their on TV live each morning in the 60′s. He was such a nice, friendly man. I can hear a bit of Reno style in Bobby’s pickin’. Don Reno once said that Earl and Ralph are two of his best friends and that he can have his eyes closed and pick out Earl’s pickin’ if Earl was in a pack of 12 banjo players all going at once. I always thought Don had his own style too. Lots of single string and two finger runs with the three finger role.

  9. TheZenBanjoist says:

    @MerlynSchutterle Judy, Bobbby’s widow, has been ill and was recovering, she is well again and getting the back orders off.

    Bobby traded his banjo & his Martin D-18 to Rolf Sieker for an old German Wheel Gun back when he was forced to retire due to MS.

    Bobby was not only a wonderful picker but one of the best Gumsmiths working on Flintlock guns as well as making the same.

  10. MerlynSchutterle says:

    Like I said before, Bobby went to Nashvill and showed Earl and the boys how to play banjo. I tried to order some CD’s from the site, but haven’t gotten a response yet. Are they still available? I have the 615 album.

  11. MerlynSchutterle says:

    Bobby went to Nashville and showed Earl the boys how to play banjo. It wasn’t limited to bluegrass.

    What ever happened to his banjo?

  12. GinnyStar2 says:

    Loved it, Dan J loved Bobby hat! :)

  13. travisfeltwater says:

    love that twang

  14. just4funzees says:

    This is not Roy Clark the Actor who Lives in Georgia

  15. myg0tBUTTPLUG says:

    Those guys are legends!!!!!

  16. DrClawizdead says:

    To a guitar player, playing that fast would be shredding. To a banjo player it’s normal.

  17. kathrynloch says:

    Bobby was a huge talent! Roy wasn’t so bad either. :)

  18. bboymartinoo says:

    I like the Guitar Ending that was the best part … hahahhahahahhahaha Sike that was awesome

  19. ksarhe says:

    @walleyrt69 Thats cool I called him Daddy! He was and will always be my hero.

  20. Pickinbuddy says:

    @ksarhe Bobby had one of the 3 MOST recognizeable tones in all of Bluegrass–the other two being Earl, and Ralph Stanley–you’d just KNOW who it was after hearing the first 3 notes! Bobby was the creator of the ‘melodic style’ of picking…and he was ahead of his time. By the way, I think he was distant kin to another great banjo-picking Thompson–Cecil Thompson of Louisiana, who is also a great admirer of Bobby.

  21. walleyrt69 says:

    @ksarhe His freinds called him Bob !

  22. OSCAR82AA says:

    Why can’t you get this great stuff on TV anymore?

  23. OSCAR82AA says:

    Bobby’s taken Roy to school there. What a great banjo player Bobby Thompson.

  24. hogansteel says:

    Bobby and Roy are killer but mostly Bobby, and they dont show the licks he is doing at the end of the break which is a great example of the melodic style with a bluesy feel at the end, good stuff……………….Thank You ….Bobby Thompson…You have made a difference sir……not many artists can say that.My unsung Hero……

  25. bjosh37 says:

    Bobby Thompson is a banjo legend!

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