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About this video
"Smilin" Jim Eanes singing In His Arms, I'm Not Afraid. This is one of the last
performances he made before his death
About the artist
Though never considered a major star, Smilin' Jim Eanes was an influential
figure in both bluegrass and country music for over five decades.
He was born Homer Robert Eanes, Jr. in Mountain Valley, Virginia and received
his first guitar at age nine from his banjo-picking father.
While young, Eanes suffered an injury to his left hand; despite the difficulty and
pain, he still managed to master rhythm guitar.
He spent his early teen years playing square dances with his father's informal
string band, and at age 16 joined Roy Hall's Blue Ridge Entertainers at a
Roanoke radio station, and remained with the band until Hall died in 1943.
Following World War II, Eanes joined Uncle Joe and the Blue Mountain Boys. He
also worked briefly with Bill Monroe in 1948.