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Country Artists We’ve Lost in 2012: Earl Scruggs

Earl Scruggs
Michael Buckner, Getty Images

As one-half of legendary bluegrass duo Flatt and Scruggs, Earl Scruggs brought the music Bill Monroe popularized to the next generation. The legend invented a three-finger picking style that replaced the traditional claw hammer style most banjo players used. His best known songs are ‘Foggy Mountain Breakdown’ and ‘The Ballad of Jed Clampett,’ but perhaps his greatest contribution is how he spread the bluegrass gospel wherever he went. He was comfortable at the Grand Ole Opry, or playing with legends like Bob Dylan or Elton John. Earl Scruggs died in March at the age of 88.

Next: Billy Strange

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