EARL SCRUGGS (and LESTER FLATT)

EARL SCRUGGS (born Jan 6, 1924, Flint Hill, NC - March 28, 2012)

LESTER FLATT (Jun 14, 1914, Duncan's Chapel, TN - May 11, 1979, Nashville, TN)


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Beginning in 1967, Bob Dylan and his Columbia stable-mate EARL SCRUGGS (with his long-time partner LESTER FLATT) shared a common producer, Bob Johnston, who urged substantial changes in the Flatt & Scruggs traditional bluegrass repertoire.


"Basically, Bob Johnston, with his emphasis on the new breed of singer-songwriters (as opposed to the staunch-traditional country and bluegrass songwriters) contributed to the break-up of Flatt & Scruggs. While Earl Scruggs expressed a growing boredom with traditional bluegrass ("I was playing the same thing over and over every night. I just couldn't stand it any longer."), Lester Flatt felt uneasy with Bob Johnston: "He also cuts Bob Dylan and we would record what he would come up with, regardless of whether I liked it or not. I can't sing Bob Dylan stuff, I mean. Columbia has got Bob Dylan, why did they want me?"

Neil V. Rosenberg, Liner notes for "Flatt & Scruggs", Time-Life Records TLCW-04, 1982


Several Dylan songs were covered during their late 1960s recording sessions, until in Aug 1969, Flatt & Scruggs (following a final joint performance at Nashville's Grand Ole Opry on Feb 22, 1969) recorded together for the last time, fulfilling their contractual obligations to Columbia Records.