Uncle Pen’s Fiddle Returns

by | 6 Oct, 2009

Campbell Mercer from the Jerusalem Ridge Bluegrass Music Foundation, has sent through an email advising that after Ralph Stanley’s closing set at this year’s Jerusalem Ridge Festival, Uncle Pen’s last fiddle will be presented on stage by the family who has owned it since Pen’s passing.

The fiddle will be played as the sisters sing a gospel song. This fiddle is the one that Uncle Pen played when Bill Monroe lived with him in his log cabin from 1927-1929 and underwent 2 intense years of musical training. It’s also the one referred to in the famous lyric they hung up his fiddle, they hang up his bow, they knew it was time for him to go.

After Pen passed away in 1932, the fiddle was inherited by Cleve Baize who played it until he died and then left it to his children. The have lovingly kept it safe all these years.

The four day Jerusalem Ridge Festival  is held in the grounds of the original Monroe family property, Jerusalem Ridge, located just outside of Rosine, Kentucky.