Music: Traditional Bluegrass
Ronnie Reno & The Reno Tradition
To watch Ronnie Reno and the Reno Tradition is to witness living traditional and bluegrass history. Ronnie has had one of the most colorful, diverse and distinguished careers in the music industry. On the country side, he has toured as an opening act and band member for Merle Haggard, toured with Mel Tillis, done studio work for Johnny Cash, Conway Twitty and Willie Nelson, and written hits for both Haggard and Twitty. On the bluegrass side, he spent several years providing part of the trademark harmonies of the Osborne Brothers.
Bookending those personal milestones is a career based in family that has provided modern music with some of its most noteworthy moments. As a boy, Ronnie became part of bluegrass greatness when he picked up the mandolin and joined his father’s band. His dad, Don Reno, happened to be one-half of Hall of Famers Reno and Smiley, and young Ronnie was part of many of the act's great recordings in the '50s and '60s. He also sang and played mandolin and guitar for the Don Reno Band before joining the Osbornes, with whom he worked for five years and five albums.
It was while the Osbornes were opening for Merle Haggard that Haggard took note of Ronnie's talents, asking Ronnie to open for him, and bringing him on as a full-time band member. Ronnie appeared on ten of Haggard’s albums and harmonized with Merle and Bonnie Owens through the '70s and early '80s, a period that included classic hits like "If We Make It Through December," "Always Wanting You," "If We're Not Back In Love By Monday," and "Ramblin' Fever."
Ronnie recorded the first of his own albums for MCA in the '80s, releasing singles like "Homemade Love" and "The Letter," before teaming up with his father and younger brothers Dale and Don Wayne for a few years until his father’s death in 1984. At that point, the Reno Brothers recorded six albums and toured together for 15 years, setting a new standard of excellence in the Reno Tradition and completing the circle that had been set in motion when he was a boy.
Ronnie's life in music has seen his wide-ranging accomplishments earn him any number of honors. He created, produced and starred in his own cable TV program, Reno’s Old Time Music Festival, which could be seen in 28 million households and earned a nomination for the prestigious Cable Ace Award for Best Musical Series. Ronnie has received the Distinguished Achievement Award from the International Bluegrass Music Association, and has served on the board of directors of the International Bluegrass Music Museum in Owensboro, KY and the Kentucky Center for Traditional Music at Morehead State University. These days, Ronnie heads the Reno Tradition, an act that encapsulates some of the greatest sounds and moments of traditional bluegrass music.
Want to Know More?
Don't hesitate to contact the JRA Fine Arts team to learn more about this artist.