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In Memory of Jim McReynolds



By: Jim & Jesse

This is Jim and Jesse’s final live studio project and by the time I received it for review, I was sorry to learn that Jim had passed away. He was born February 13th, 1927 and passed away December 31st, 2002. Jim was born in a small settlement called Carfax, Virginia near the town of Coeburn, Virginia. Coeburn is a little mining town which used to be connected to the rest of the world by the Norfolk and Western Railroad.

It is situated approximately 25 miles down the railroad from the tiny area of Finney, Virginia where I grew up where the Clinch River flows and the Clinch Mountains rise. While I had met Jim many times over the years at various festivals throughout the East and West, and although I did not know him personally, somehow his passing made me feel a “kin” to him and I truly felt that I had lost a brother and the music and bluegrass world has lost a legend and we are all so fortunate for the gift of his music and talent that he has left us. Having grown up in the same area of Virginia, I have always considered Jim and Jesse to be the epitome of a true “Virginia Gentleman”. While depression years were lean and times were hard, we were taught to save our best for Sunday and special occasions. Jim and Jesse always dressed accordingly and you didn’t have to look twice to see that they felt their fans deserved the best. Kinda like an old time Virginia Preacher, had to put on a white shirt and tie in order to preach, Jim and Jesse had to put on a white tie in order to sing. What a great duet with such harmony only brothers could achieve. Now back to their last live studio project, “Tis Sweet To Be Remembered”, there are twelve songs on this CD and of course I like them all…

  1. Tis Sweet To Be Remembered - Includes some good mandolin playing by Jesse and the words and vocals by Jim bring tears to you eyes and an ache to your heart.

  2. As Long As I Live - This has good fiddle music by Glen Duncan who seems to make the fiddle cry at the appropriate time while the vocals make you cry when you realize “As Long As I Live” has passed for Jim.

  3. Standing at the End of My World - Good song with good mandolin but again very sad.

  4. Before I Met You - Good song, good harmony

  5. Cora is Gone - An old time song done in such a way, you never tire of it.

  6. I Couldn’t Believe It Was True - Good harmony with the traditional bluegrass sound

  7. Mississippi Moon - I found this to be a good blues style song that I enjoyed

  8. She’s Running Wild - Lots of good harmony complimented by good bluegrass fiddle.

Whether you are a bluegrass collector or not, you will not want to miss out on this keepsake CD.

Jesse McReynolds & The Virginia Boys are booked by: J&J Music, P. O. Box 1385, Gallatin, TN 37066, Ph: 615 452-7321, e-mail