King of Bluegrass: The Life & Times of Jimmy Martin

Banjo player and first-time filmmaker George Goehl produced and directed this engaging digital-video profile of bluegrass legend Jimmy Martin, who got his start with Bill Monroe in 1949 and recorded hit singles for Decca through the late 60s. Now in his early 70s, Martin prowls around his suburban Nashville home in a jumpsuit and a policeman's cap, hunts raccoons and squirrels with his hound dogs, and plays the odd gig—all the while bitterly assailing the Grand Ol' Opry, which inspired him as a boy but has since given him the brush-off as a performer. Goehl seems too starstruck to probe into the decline of Martin's career beyond his friends' assessment that he rubbed people the wrong way, but the music is excellent throughout. 66 min.

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