Billy Strings is phenomenal at covering artists that play a significant role in curating the sound that he has today.
If there is one thing Strings is good at (other than being able to jam for hours with his band after a song effortlessly), it’s honoring the greats that came before him.
One of those is the iconic mandolin player and bluegrass artist, the “Father of Bluegrass,” Bill Monroe.
Written about his uncle, Pendleton Vandiver, the tune “Uncle Pen” was originally recorded and released by Monroe, however the popular tune has been covered by numerous artists over the years.
It was recorded by Porter Wagoner in 1956, Michael Nesmith of The Monkees, Ricky Skaggs had a #1 with the song in 1984, and even the iconic jam band Phish has worked it into their live show a number of times.
The song makes you want to stomp your foot and have a damn good time, and of course, Strings lays down a phenomenal cover.
The band kicks off the tune, and as Strings steps up to sing the first verse and he goes:
“F**k, I forgot the words.”
No less than two seconds later, they come to him, and he lays them down like it is nothing.
I think this video is becoming one of my new favorites.