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Who Brother Oswald (Pete Kirby)
When October 17, 2002
Where Nashville, TN
What Acuff's sidekick leaves own legacy
 

(Excerpt from the article mentioned above)

Acuff's sidekick leaves own legacy

Beecher Kirby

By PETER COOPER
Staff Writer

Among the best-known, best-loved sidemen in the history of country music, Grand Ole Opry member Beecher Kirby better known as "Bashful Brother Oswald" died yesterday morning at his Madison home. He was 90.

A famously gregarious performer whose "Bashful" nickname belied his onstage personality, Mr. Kirby played a starring role in Roy Acuff's monumentally popular Smoky Mountain Boys band.

His Dobro work and his supporting vocals were integral parts of genre-defining Acuff smashes including The Precious Jewel and Wreck On The Highway.

"Acuff had one of my favorite groups, and Oswald was the backbone of the whole thing," said Country Music Hall of Famer Earl Scruggs, who remembers childhood evenings spent listening to Acuff and the Smoky Mountain Boys on the Grand Ole Opry.

"Beyond any doubt, he was the most important part of that band. He was one of my first heroes, Oswald was, and he was a friend from the first time I met him."

Of the instrumentals Mr. Kirby performed, the most requested one was Oswald Dobro Chimes, also called Steel Guitar Chimes. The song is based on an old Hawaiian folk song that Kirby rewrote.

Mr. Kirby is survived by his wife, Euneta; son, Billy, four grandchildren; and several great-grandchildren.

 
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