Public paying last respects to Earl Scruggs

FILE - In this July 30, 2011 file photo, Earl Scruggs performs at the Newport Folk Festival in Newport, R.I. Scruggs' son Gary said his father passed away Wednesday morning, March 28, 2012 at a Nashville, Tenn., hospital of natural causes. He was 88. (AP Photo/Joe Giblin, File)

FILE - In this July 30, 2011 file photo, Earl Scruggs performs at the Newport Folk Festival in Newport, R.I. Scruggs' son Gary said his father passed away Wednesday morning, March 28, 2012 at a Nashville, Tenn., hospital of natural causes. He was 88. (AP Photo/Joe Giblin, File)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- Mourners have gathered in Nashville to pay last respects to bluegrass legend Earl Scruggs.

A public funeral was set for Sunday afternoon at the Ryman Auditorium near a cluster of downtown honky-tonks where his music is still played. His plaque in the Country Music Hall of Fame is three blocks away.

Scruggs, a pioneering banjo player who teamed for 20 years with guitarist Lester Flatt, died Wednesday at age 88.

The Academy of Country Music planned a tribute Sunday night at its annual awards show in Las Vegas.

Flatt and Scruggs were best known for their song "The Ballad of Jed Clampett" from "The Beverly Hillbillies" TV series. Flatt died in 1979.


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