ralph stanley

Brian Blauser/Mountain Stage / Mountain Stage

Ralph Stanley, a patriarch of Appalachian music who made four appearances on "Mountain Stage" starting in 1998, died Thursday from difficulties with skin cancer. He was 89. Continue reading to hear performances by Stanley of "Angel Band" and "Pretty Polly" as heard on Mountain Stage.

"Mountain Stage" host and artistic director Larry Groce had this to say:

The skies of Virginia and West Virginia opened last night as Ralph Stanley passed, and poured rain on his home in historic and tragic proportions. Perhaps it’s coincidence.