Roland White

(guitar - 5/21/1967-2/1969)
Circa 2001, photo by Jim Peva.

Born: 4/23/1938

As a Blue Grass Boy: Roland White first played with Bill Monroe on a California tour in May of 1967. The band bus had broken down in Texas and Bill went on ahead, leaving several of the Blue Grass Boys with the bus. Members of Roland's band, the Kentucky Colonels, filled in with Bill until the other band members arrived. Roland joined the tour as a guest and at the end of it was hired as the new guitarist, replacing Doug Green who planned to return to college. Roland stayed with Monroe for nearly two years and recorded on three sessions, including singing lead on the first recording of "Walls of Time".

Recording Sessions: 8/23/1967, 11/9/1967, 11/14/1968

Before and After: Although he played guitar with Bill Monroe, Roland White is primarily known as a mandolin player. He started as a member of family group the Country Boys in the late 50s; this group appeared several times on the Andy Griffith show before changing its name to the Kentucky Colonels. Roland left Monroe's band in 1969 to take a job with Lester Flatt's Nashville Grass. After leaving Flatt in 1973, he reunited with his brothers Clarence and Eric, a grouping that was tragically cut short when Clarence was killed by a drunk driver. That same year, Roland joined Country Gazette, a band that also included former Blue Grass Boy Byron Berline. Roland joined the band as a guitarist but later switched back to mandolin. He recorded eight albums with Country Gazette before leaving in 1988 to join the Nashville Bluegrass Band. After ten years and five albums, he left the NBB to form the Roland White Band.

Honors: IBMA Hall of Fame (2017)

Links: Roland White's official website
Country Gazette bio- and discography