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22:05

Ed Helms: In Scranton Or 'Cedar Rapids,' He's Plucky

Ed Helms plays a paper pusher on The Office and an insurance salesman in the new comedy Cedar Rapids — but on Thursday's Fresh Air, he plays the banjo. With his band The Lonesome Trio, he joins Terry Gross for an in-studio performance and a chat about his latest film.

06:40

Ricky Skaggs: A 'Mosaic' Of Modesty, Openness

Skaggs became a mainstream country music star in the 1980s, but in recent years, he's become more interested in performing in a traditional bluegrass style. Ken Tucker says the tracks on Skaggs' album Mosaic "don't just fit together -- they lock into place with a firmness."

11:12

Ricky Skaggs: A Bluegrass Musician Returns To Roots

Skaggs started performing as a child and was considered a musical prodigy. After a string of country hits in the 1980s, he returned to bluegrass, performing folk renditions of his own country hits. In 2003, Skaggs spoke to Fresh Air host Terry Gross about growing up in the music industry and playing with Bill Monroe and Earl Scruggs.

18:37

Charlie Haden: A Bassist With A Country Pedigree.

Bassist Charlie Haden is known as a great jazz musician, but his background is all country. Growing up, he performed alongside his siblings in the Haden Family Band on radio stations across the South and Midwest. He details what it was like to grow up musically -- and why he recently returned to his country roots -- in a 2008 interview on Fresh Air.

This interview was originally broadcast on Sept. 24, 2008.

21:20

Earl Scruggs, On Life — And Banjo Picking

Earl Scruggs' name is almost synonymous with the banjo. And for a good reason, too — he helped pioneer Bluegrass music with his three-finger banjo picking technique, now known as "Scruggs Style."

34:58

Bluegrass Musician Earl Scruggs

Earl Scruggs, who turned 80 on Jan. 6, originated the staccato three-finger, five-string banjo technique that became known as the "Scruggs style." He got his start playing with Bill Monroe's band in the 1940s, and then teamed up with guitarist Lester Flatt (fronting The Foggy Mountain Boys). The two penned and recorded the tune "Foggy Mountain Breakdown" which was used on the Bonnie and Clyde film soundtrack and was one of the first crossover hits of the genre.

31:54

Bluegrass Musician Earl Scruggs

He originated the staccato, three-finger banjo technique that became known as the "Scruggs style." He got his start playing with Bill Monroe's band in the 1940s, and then teamed up with guitarist Lester Flatt (fronting The Foggy Mountain Boys). The two penned and recorded the tune "Foggy Mountain Breakdown," which was used on the Bonnie and Clyde film soundtrack and was one of the first crossover hits of the genre. They also recorded "The Ballad of Jed Clampett," the theme song for the sitcom The Beverly Hillbillies. It topped the charts in 1962.

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