Ira Stripling

Born: June 5, 1898  Pickens Co., AL

Died: Mar. 1967

Lived in Kennedy, AL

Country, Bluegrass Guitar, Vocals Stripling Brothers

See also The Stripling Brothers

Source: Alabama Music Hall of Fame


Charlie Stripling was born just outside of Kennedy, Alabama in 1896 and was one of the premier fiddlers of the south during the 1920's.  He, along with his brother Ira, recorded many wonderful and unusual tunes that displayed his remarkable liquid tone, admired by many.  He attributed his main source to Uncle Plez Carroll, a  local dance fiddler he heard as a young boy.  Charlie won many contests during his career and continued to play  regularly with his family and others at various community functions until the 1950's as well as  continuing to maintain his farm. He wrote many of his own tunes, such as Kennedy Rag,  which are still standard fare for current oldtime fiddlers, and was adept at many styles of playing other than just breakdowns, which contributed  greatly to his  popularity.  By 1963, he had contracted severe arthritis and no longer had a fiddle in the house and died in 1966.

Source: Roots of American Fiddle Music



Charlie Stripling — Alabama’s Most Recorded Fiddler

On November 15, 1928, the brothers traveled to Birmingham where the Brunswick-Balke-Collender Company had set up a temporary recording studio in the Bankhead Hotel. Ira Stripling recalled the occasion: “When we went up there that night, they had some bands that sounded good to me and he [Manager Jack Kapp] just frown up and ask them if they didn’t have anything better than that. Bands just sounded real good to me and he wouldn’t take anything they had. I didn’t think there was any use for us to even wait for a trial. I told Charlie, ‘We’d just as well go.’ ”

They stayed, however, and finally got their opportunity to audition. In Ira’s words, “The first piece Charlie started, he [Kapp] started smiling. Didn’t play over what you’d call — what old people called a stanza — you know, played only one stanza and he motioned to him to stop. Says, ‘We’ll try that. What else do you have?’ Charlie told him and started to playing that. And so he didn’t play but a little piece and he stopped him again. Then’s when he told us he’d try us and if it made good, we’d hear from him in about two weeks. We didn’t hear anything from it till Charlie heard it playing in a music store in Fayette.”— Joyce Cauthen

Excerpt from “With Fiddle and Well-Rosined Bow”


More info: The Stripling Brothers

Lee Stripling: Documentary

The Legacy of a Neighborhood: Uncle Plez Carroll and Charlie Stripling

Encyclopedia of Alabama: Charlie Stripling

The Stripling Brothers Vol. 1 1928 - 1934, Stripling BrothersThe Stripling Brothers Vol. 2 1934 - 1936, Stripling Brothers

Listen: Stripling Brothers - Download Stripling Brothers Music on iTunes

Listen: Stripling Brothers: Songs, Albums, Pictures, Bios








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