ERNIE THACKER (AND ROUTE 23)

  • From Cleveland, Ohio. Lives in Haysi, Virginia (near Ralph Stanley’s hometown of McClure).
  • 1988-1994, sang lead and played both mandolin and guitar with Ralph Stanley’s Clinch Mountain Boys.
  • At age 13, had a band called the Country Cousins. Two years later, a band called the Bluegrass Revelators.
  • He has two sons named Keith and Whitley.
  • 1994, left Stanley’s band to form a group with another Clinch Mountain Boy, Junior Blankenship.
  • 1995, released Tennessee Blues album (Copper Creek).
  • 1997, formed his own band called Route 23, named for a scenic highway in Virginia.
  • 2002, released Chill of Lonesome album (Doobie Shea).
  • 2006, was seriously injured in an auto accident, leaving him paralyzed. One of his legs was amputated.
  • 2008, confined to a wheelchair, recorded and released a new album Hangman (Pinecastle).
  • 2018, after a long battle with various physical problems, he passed away on April 10.
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