Earl Scruggs is to the five-string banjo what Paganini was to the violin. He created a banjo style (now called Scruggs style) that is one of the defining characteristics of bluegrass. He joined Bill Monroe's Blue Grass Boys in late 1945. His syncopated, three-finger picking style quickly became a sensation. In 1948 he left Monroe's band and formed Flatt and Scruggs with guitarist Lester Flatt, who had also just left the Blue Grass Boys. In 1968, Flatt and Scruggs broke up and Scruggs started a new band, the Earl Scruggs Revue, featuring several of his sons.
Flatt and Scruggs won a Grammy Award in 1969 for Scruggs' instrumental "Foggy Mountain Breakdown." On February 13, 2003, Scruggs received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.