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Early September 2015 fortnight’s favorites: Billy Ray, Otis Parker and Don Teague (1952-1963)
sept 1st, 2015 by xavier

 

Howdy folks ! Everybody’s back from holydays ? Ready for stomping hillbilly !

 

The first artist chosen is BILLY RAY, born William H. Ray. He was living in Baton Rouge when he was signed by Columbia in November 1952. He cut 8 songs during two sessions. « Tired of talking to the blues » was issued on Columbia subsidiary Okeh 18009. It’s a real blues number with a spare instrumentation (guitar, piano and bass) probably cut in New Orleans. The second interesting song from the next session is « You gotta pet me baby » (Okeh 18030), a nice uptempo hillbilly. Alas, sales were poor, Columbia did not renew the contract and Ray disappeared. Maybe he’s the same on Titan in 1960.

okeh 18009 tired

okeh 18030 billy ray

 

« Tired of talking to the blues«  download

« You gotta pet me baby« download

 

James « OTIS » PARKER was a Tennessean (1920-1992), whose career began in 1949 on Rich-R’Tone. How he came to have in 1955 a record issued on Covington, California’s New Star label # 529 (a Starday custom) is a mystery. « They don’t have to operate (they just pull the zipper) » is a comedy-hillbilly not so far from Homer Clemons of 5 years before on Modern (« Operation blues »). Good fast proto-rockabilly. Previously he also had an issue in 1951 on Holyday (untraced).

« They don’t have to operate« download

 

Otis Parker pic

new star 529 otis parker

 

DON TEAGUE is a completely unknown artist from the Lexington, KY area. I picked up his two records on the Rains label from 1963. First is billed as « Don Teague with Pap and the Young’uns » and gives a radio station WZEJ indication : « Oh, how bad I feel » (Rains 103) is a fast hillbilly – lot of fiddle, a rockabilly guitar solo, a nice dobro, and an assured vocal. The second (Rains 108) has no connection indication, just « Don Teague with the Blue Valley Boys ». Much slower (« Pure country music » on the label), « I’ll take a walk » is nevertheless a very nice tune, with good dobro and fiddle.

rains 103 don teague - oh how badrains 108 don teague

 

 

« Oh, how bad I feel« download

« I’m gonna take a walk« download

 

Just for a change, a R&B rocker by (Napoleon) CHICO CHISM on the Shreveport, La. Clif label (# 102) – the very same that beared T.V. Slim‘s first issue of « Flat foot Sam ». « Hot tamales and Bar-B-Que » (1957). Enjoy all !
« Hot tamales and Bar-B-Que« download
clif 102 chico chism

Sources : 45rpm.com (Dan De Clerk), Youtube, Okeh 18000 (Willem Agenant), malcychapman.blogspot (Starday customs)

 

Early August 2015 fortnight’s favorites
août 1st, 2015 by xavier

Howdy folks ! I should have given myself a big kick, when I posted Ralph Pruett’s « Louise », last fortnight, and not having thought of the other record of the man, RALPH PRUITT, from Florida. He cut indeed the great haunting Rockabilly « Hey Mr. Porter », first on Lark 1506, later transferred on Meridian (same number # 1506).

lark 1506
« Hey, Mr. Porter« download

 

 

Another well-known Hillbilly bop/rockabilly man whose I told the story a mere several years ago of was LOU MILLET. Until very recently I didn’t know his offering on Ekko 1024 from 1956 , which predates his solitary Republic 45 ’ (« Shorty the barber/Slip, slippin’ in » (# 7130). So here are his « Chapel of my heart » and « When I harvest my love », both ballads ; the B-side is more solid.

« Chapel of my heart« download      ekko 1024 chapel

« When I harvest my love« download

The remaining selections are all by HUB SUTTER. He had a rich discographical career between 1946 and 57. Hubert Sutter, legally blind since childhood, was adept to both saxophone and clarinet and began his professionnal career in 1941. Later we found him as vocalist for the popular Jesse James in Austin (4* Records), before going solo on Lasso (a version of « New Frankie & Johnny« ), billed as Hub Sutter & his Galvestonians (actually Jesse James’ band in disguise). In 1950 he formed his Hub Cats and was signed with the upcoming Freedom Records in Houston. There he had two issues. « I don’t want my baby back » (# 5015) has an agile electric mandolin and possibly Herb Remington on steel. The rocking « Tellin’ my baby bye bye » (# 5030) was recorded with R. D. Hendon‘s Western Jamboree Cowboys, probably at the same session that produced Charlie Harris‘ « No shoes boogie » (# 5033).

 

« The craziest feeling« download

« New Frankie and Johnny« download

« I don’t want my baby back« download

« Tellin’ my baby bye bye« download

4* 1520 the craziest feelinglasso 102 frankiefreedom 5015 hub sutter - I don't want my baby back

 

 

 

Later on Sutter dropped the steel guitar and added a second saxophone. He then worked extensively with Floyd Tillman, Link Davis, Sonny Hall and Glen Barber.

 

 

 

In 1957, he re-cut « I don’t want my baby back » on the Columbus label (# 103). The rollicking flipside « Gone goslin » is here. Columbus was owned by Eddie Eddings and Sonny Fisfer.

« Gone Goslin« download
columbus C-103

 

Sources : Internet, and the notes to CD « Heading back to Houston » (Krazy Kat). With help from Drunken Hobo. Of interest also was the Hillbily Researcher blogspot and the entry to « Columbus Records » or Terry Gordon’s invaluable Rockin’ Country Style.

Red Perkins, Paul Howard’s front man: « The boogie’s fine tonight » (1948-1950)
juil 18th, 2015 by xavier

 

Red Perkins, nor related to the jazz trumpeter Red Perkins as with Carl Perkins, until today remains more or less a mystery within the country music since little is known about him. Not even a picture of him has ever surfaced. Nobody seems to know how he came to appear in 1947 on the country music scene, when he started as a singer for Paul Howard in its western swing band, the Arkansas Cotton Pickers to work. This group he belonged to until 1949, but led at the same time also has his own career.

 

paul howard pic

Paul Howard

In May 1949, King let Perkins cut his first solo titles : « Aggravatin’ Lou from Louisville » and « Hoe-down boogie » (# 792) were the best of four tracks recorded. In November 1949, as well as in the course of 1950, followed other sessions,

We find him in on the amusing « Crocodile tears » (# 836) and « One at a time » (# 850). The title of his last studio visit were published on Kings sublabel DeLuxe Records [ named Red Perkins and his Kentucky Redheads, perhaps Howard's Cottonpickers in disguise]. In March 1950, Perkins played once again as a singer with Paul Howard and the band in the studio KWKH in Shreveport, Louisiana for 4 more tracks, among them « The boogie’s fine tonight » (# 871)- great pounding piano from Harold Horner, and a good guitar from either Paul Howard himself or Jabbo Arrington.

Under Perkins’ recordings for King to songs like « A Long Necked Bottle »(# 920), « Hoe-Down Boogie » (# 792), « Rag man boogie » (# 903) or « Aggravating Lou from Louisville »(# 792) were, however, found none of his singles off the charts, not least was due to the poor marketing of the label. What Perkins did after that is uncertain.

 

All in all, a career that lasted not more than 2 years ; nearly not more than a dozen 78pm singles ; and a very few to remember as shufflers and good’uns.

bb 9:7:49 Perkins hoe-down

Billboard 9 Jul. 49

king 871-AA paul howard - the boogie's fine tonightking 792-AA red perkins - hoe-down boogie

792A aggravatin' lou

bb 4 nov 50 red perkins

Billboard 4 Nov. 1950

 

 

 

« The boogie’s fine tonight »download

« Hoe-down boogie« download

« Aggravatin’ Lou from Louisville« download

« Texas boogie« download

king 779-A paul howard - texas boogie

903A rag man boogie

« Rag man boogie« download

« I live the life I love« download

DeLuxe 5047B red perkins - I live the life I love

Sources: a short biography Wikipedia (which is confusing with the pre-War Red Perkins on Champion) translated from German language. A discography on Praguefrank site: http://countrydiscography.blogspot.fr/2009/10/red-perkins.html. Internet for label scans. With help from Ronald Keppner (DeLuxe issue).

« Servant of love », a survey of the Van Brothers and the Gentrys (Indiana, 1957-1968) + Jimmy Walls
juil 15th, 2015 by xavier

The Van Winkle Brothers (Arnold and Lee) were musically prolific from 1956 to 1962 . Nobody seùs to have any informaion on their childhood, although U.S. 1940 Census gives for Arnold a birthdate in 1935 ; but the birthplace is in Tennessee, when they made their careers as far as Indianapolis.

 

Read the rest of this entry »

Late July 2015 fortnight’s favorites
juil 14th, 2015 by xavier

Let’s start this batch of fortnight’s favorites with a mysterious CURT HINSON. He hailed from S.C. and was at one time tied with WDLC in Dillon, S.C., where he was known as « Curt Hinson & His Sunset Troubadours ». Nothing is known about him except for two, maybe three records. The first one on Gotham 431, « Let’s see you smile » (1952) was coupled with « Down deep in my heart ». The first side is a nice uptempo, partly duetted (with the mysterious « Molinaro », who co-penned this track and the A-side on Carolina ?), over a chanting steel all along and a good swirling fiddle. The same songs were apparently reissued straight out on N.Y.C. Carolina label # 1001.

On Carolina 1003, Hinson has two « new » songs, « Cotton picking baby », a nice uptempo – weird and fooling fiddle, a steel solo and Troy Ferguson on the lead guitar. The flip side « You’re old love is haunting you still »[sic] is on a par with the presumably A-side. Fine relaxed vocal from Hinson, ably backed by a fluent guitar player. The identity of the guitar player was given by « HillbillyBoogie1 » on his Youtube chain, and I wonder where the information came from.

« Let’s see you smile« download
« Cotton picking baby« 
http://www.bopping.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/Carolina-1003B-Curt-Hinson-Cotton-Picking-Baby-1953.mp3download
« You’re old love is haunting you still« 
http://www.bopping.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/carolina-1003-Curt-Hinson-Youre-Old-Love-Is-Haunting-You-Still.mp3download

gothzm 431B curt hinson - let'ssee you smilecarolina 1003 curt hinson - cotton picking babycarolina 1003 curt hinson your old love
From East coast we go now to Texas and the Fort Worth area. EARL WRIGHT & Texas Oldtimers has a good double-sider on Cutt-Rite in 1962 (# 100). « Married man blues » and « You don’t know it » are good Western swing flavored (prominent fiddle, even a solo) boppers. Nice guitar too, with jazzy overtones and a fine piano. A very nice relaxed record. Wright had at least another record, Jimmie Rodgers’ « T.B. Blues » on Bluebonnet 325 (untraced).

cutt-rite 100++ married man blues

cutt-rite 100++ you don't know it

« Married man blues« download
« You don’t know it« 
http://www.bopping.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/cut-rite-100-YOU-DONT-KNOW-IT.mp3download

Now on to Ohio, with GLENN & VIVIAN WATSON, who do a good duet with « Just keep on going » on the Dayton, OH label BMC # 1000, from 1959. Fine picking guitar throughout a la Merle Travis. Vivian did in 1956 a solitary tune « Hoping that you’re hoping » on a budget Big 4 Hits EP # 195.
« Just  keep on going« download

Finally I chose from Nashville a Murray Nash production [see Mellow's Log Cabin i (hillbillycountry.blogspot.fr) for more info] by RALPH PRUETT and the song he wrote (not the blues/ traditional classic) « Louise » on B.B. 226, the very last one on this label, which saw no less than 3 Dixieland Drifters records. Topical lyrics, « Be-bop-a-Lula » is named, « Louise she’s my queen », over a relaxed vocal, with fine steel in the background plus n excellent fiddle solo.
« Louise« download

 

 

 

 

bmc 1000 glenn & vivian watson just keep on goingbb 226 ralph pruett

Sad news in France : a GREAT guy is gone, Bernard Boyat. Fine discographer, essential writer and reviewer for many magazines [more than 50, among them the vital French « Rock’n'Roll Revue » or « Le Cri du Coyote ») since the ’70s, a true gentleman, he had an encyclopedic knowledge of Rock’n'roll in general, with a special sympathy for Louisiana and Cajun people. He did help the launch of « bopping » with the co-writing of the article NATHAN ABSHIRE in January 2009. May God Almighty save his Soul and let him keep Rock’n'rolling in Heaven !

 

As usual, my special thanks to Internet, Alexander Petrauskas for his site « hillbillycountry.blogspot », and Youtube « HillbillyBoogie1″.

Eddie Zack, Cousin Richie & the Dude Ranchers: Providence, RI. Hillbilly and Rockabilly
juil 1st, 2015 by xavier

Eddie Zack (Edward Zackarian, from Armenian ancestry) was born on March 5, 1922 in Providence, Rhode Island. His first introduction to country music was in high school and at age 17, he organized his first hillbilly band, consisting of a banjo player, a washtub- and washboard player, and various spoon- and harmonica players. Among the band’s members was Eddie’s younger brother Richard (also known as “Richie”, “Cousin Richie” and, later, “Dick Richards”) who was born on January 16, 1925. When both brothers joined the marines during the War, their band came to an early end.

eddie zack pic
rhode island map

Read the rest of this entry »

Early July 2015 fortnight’s favorites
juil 1st, 2015 by xavier

Arlen Vaden was D.J. at WCKY out of Cincinati, OH, when he launched in 1958 his own Vaden label. The first issue (# 100) of the new label was by BOBBY BROWN & The Curios, who consisted of Brown (vocal, rhythm guitar), Shorty Stewart (lead guitar), Tommy Jones (bass) and Johnny Welker (drums). This record was cut at WCKY, and later on reissued on Vaden 107. « I Get The Blues «  is of course bluesy with a fine lead guitar (long solo).

« I Get The Blues« download

« Bobby’s Blues« download

vaden EP 107 bobby brown - I get the blues

vaden 109 bobbybrown - bobby's blues

 

 

Early 1959 saw Bobby Brown back for another issue on Vaden 109, this time cut at KLCN radio in Blytheville, Arkansas. Twin-lead guitars (J.C. Caughron & Tommy Holder), Larry Donn (bass), Johnny Welker (drums), but the most important and pulsating instrument is Teddy Redell‘s piano, who adds a brillant and pulsating flavor to « Bobby’s blues ». Thanks to Alexander Petrauskas who provided me with all the information. Do visit his great blogsite « Arkansas 45rpm records » or « Mellow’s Log Cabin« !

 

 

We go further East in North Wilkesboro, in N. Carolina, circa 1952-53, for a fine double-sider first on the Blue Ridge label (# 306) by LARRY RICHARDSON [banjo] & Happy Smith & the Blue Ridge Boys. Two songs are in discussion : « I’m Lonesome » and « Just Let Me Fall », both superior Bluegrass tunes, billed « Hillbilly » on the labels ! Thanks « 53jaybop » to have posted them two songs on Youtube. Later on, Richardson had on the MKB label, out of Virginia (no #) what it seems to be a rocking effort, »I’m Lonesome/I’ll Fall In Love With You » (alas untraced). We finally find him back on Blue Ridge 516 in 1960/62 for « The Nahville Jail », again a fast and fine Bluegrass number or « Wild Over Me » (great fast mandolin by Clinton Bullins?) on MKB 130 from 1968.

« I’m Lonesome« download

« Just Let Me Fall« download

larry richardson

Larry Richardson

blue ridge 306 larry richardson - I'm lonesome
blue ridge 306 just let me fall

larry richardson2

Larry Richardson on banjo

« Nashville Jail« download

« Wild Over Me« download

 

 

 

Way up North now for the Omaha, Nebraska Applause label : the TERRIFIC TABORS (with their leader Paul Tabor ? He at last holds the credit) offer a pretty weird mix of Bluegrass (unisson chorus) and garage rocker on « Rockin’ The Boat » from 1961. There’s even what sounds a steel behind the backing of guitars. The flip side, which sounds an instrumental (« Tabor Tromp ») remains untraced.

applause 1251 terrific tabord - rockin' the boat

« Rockin’ The Boat« download

 

 

 

 

 

 

charlie bowman

Charlie Bowman

 

Real old Hillbilly now by CHARLIE BOWMAN & His Hill Billies on the Brunswick label. Bowman was a fiddler and a banjo player on several sides cut in New York with the Hopkins Brothers between October 1926 and May 1927 : « East Tennessee Blues » and « Riding That Mule ».

« East Tennessee Blues« download

« Riding That Mule« download

Finally a SHORTY LONG, who has apparently nothing to do with the S. Long I discussed thoroughly earlier in this site, does a romping R&B rocker (saxes), although the voice sounds white, with « Redstone John » on the K-Son label (# 7283). Location unknown.
k-son 7283 shorty long - redstone john

« Redstone John« download

Sources : YouTube, www.Arkansas45rpm-records,Tony Russell’s Country Music Records 1921-1942. Any correction or addition welcome !

 

Late June 2015 fortnight’s favorites
juin 15th, 2015 by xavier

Howdy folks, I am back from Corsica isle (« l’île de Beauté ») where I visited my girl friend and did help her to set up her fairytales’ exhibition before children. While I was there I couldn’t get access to my files, thus not allowing to myself to set up early June fortnight’s favorites.

glen reeves2

Glenn Reeves

 

Let’s begin in Texas with GLENN REEVES, born 1932 in Shamrock, TX. He had his first two records on the T.N.T. Label (owned by Bob Tanner, who billed proudly his labels records as « Tanner’n'Texas »!). « I’m Johnny on the spot » (TNT 120) is already a proto-rockabilly classic. But its reverse, the plaintive hillbilly « The blues are out tonight », is not so well known, although a very good ballad. Listen to the real hillbilly pronunciation of Reeves, over a nice fiddle and steel. I love such a record like this. 

« The blues are out tonight« download

Later he had on TNT 129 « I ain’t got room to rock », before switching to Republic (the great « That’ll be love ») and Atco (« Rockin’ country style »/ »Drinkin’ wine spo-dee-o-dee ») in 1956, yet before turning teen on Decca in 1957. Meanwhile, he had relocated in Florida, pushing himself as a performer and D.J. On WPDQ out of Jacksonvile, FL. That’s where he met Mae Axton, her fellow-composer, and Tommy Durden, who both looked for someone who could demo their « Heartbreak hotel ». At first, Reeves denied, before agreeing – and the result was presented at a Nashville D.J. convention late 1955 to Elvis as his first million seller (the promise of Mae Axton), which he cut January 1956, in a style very close to Reeves. Here is the Reeves’ demo.

tnt 120A glenn reeves -  the blues are out tonight

Glenn Reeves « Heartbreak hotel« download

The third compere was TOMMY DURDEN. He had a long story as steel player for Tex Ritter, and later for Johnny Cash, and composer (e.g. « Honey bop » for Wanda Jackson). In 1951 on the Sahul Kahal’s Freedom label out of Houston, Texas, he cut the great « Hula boogie » (# 5025). Later on, he had his own version of « Heartbreak hotel » (« Moods » LP, religious songs), before relocating in Michigan. He retired in the early ’90s.

tommy durden

Tommy Durden

 

 

 

Tommy Durden « Hula boogie« download

 

 

freedom 5025 hula boogie

 

 

On the next artist, GEORGE HEFFINGTON, I know litterally nothing, except he was one of the first to record on the growing Toppa label (owned by Jack Morris, out of Covina, Ca.), and is backed for the fast « Ghost of love » (# 1007, 1958) by, among others, Ralph Mooney on steel. Good piano too.

George Heffington « Ghost of love« download
toppa 1007A ghost of love

Real name to next artist was Wilcoxson, but he’s known now as JIMMIE DALE. And there were in the ’50s two different men with the same name. The first to jump on my mind is an Indiana artist, who cut two Starday custom records in 1958. First on Jeffersonville, IN Saber label (# 707), he cut the fabulous two-sider « Baby doll » (great slap bass, energetic drums and lead guitar) and « Darlin’ » (very nice piano, à la Teddy Reddell over a mambo rhythm). In Louisville, KY, he had in 1958 too on the Farrall label (# 687) « Man made moon », more of a country record. Nice vocal, and again a rinky-dink piano and good steel. I couldn’t locate the flipside « For a day ».

The second JIMMIE DALE was a Nashvillian, who cut « Tennessee ghost train » in 1953 on the Original label # 501. The credits don’t give any clue. Lot of echo on the steel, a train song of course.

 

 

jimmie dale

Jimmie Dale (Saber, Farrall)

Jimmie Dale « Baby doll« download

Jimmie Dale « Darlin’« download

Jimmie Dale « Man made moon« download

Jimmie Dale [different artist]« Tennessee ghost train« download

saber 708 baby dollsaber 708A Darlin'farral 687man made moonoriginal 501 tenn. ghost train

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

That’s all for this fortnight, folks. Comments welcome, as usual.

Sources and credits : internet, RCS, Youtube, lot of labor !

Rambling Rufus Shoffner « At the burlesque show » – Michigan hillbilly bop and Bluegrass (1952-1968)
mai 18th, 2015 by xavier

Rambling Rufus Shoffner earned his nickname from his early hobo days when he hopped a train at the age of 16 from his home in Tazewell (or Harrogate?), TN where he was born in 1916 to go wandering: he led a band called the Blue Yodel Boys in 1939 on WROL Knoxville, Tennessee. His neighbor in Tennessee was Hugh Friar, who had later in the Detroit label Clix two fine and very sought after Rockabilly/Country issues (« I can’t stay mad at you », # 805 for example) . But Shoffner’s constant urge to travel resulted in his roaming across much of the country, hustling in one moneymaking scheme after another, before finally settling down in Monroe, Michigan, reuniting with his siblings in 1950. Read the rest of this entry »

Rem Wall & the Green Valley Boys: Michigan’s Country-rock (1950-1962)
mai 17th, 2015 by xavier

Not many things are known about Rem Wall. He was born 1918 in Frankfort, Illinois and he died 1994.

He started at an early age entertaining during the ’30s at different local radio stations and, after being graduated in 1939, decided to settle in Kalamazoo, Michigan. He performed on radios WGFG, later WKZO, where he had even a TV show, « the Green Valley Jamboree » which lasted for 36 years, himself being signed to WKZO for even 44 years.

He then recorded for a lot of companies : Wrightman in 1951 (as Rembert Wall), then Bakersfield (1957), Glenn (1960-62), Wolverine and Columbia. He even had an issue in Great Britain. His music, although hillbilly at the beginning, became more and more softer by the years ’60s. His best songs are : « Heartsick and blue », « Waiting » (lot of echo for this good ballad), « One of these days » (banjo led folkish tune) , « Time alone » from 1962 (a fine shuffler) or « Carried away ».

In 1958 he was chosen by the U.S. Government to represent Country music in Germany and then he toured a lot there.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

He seems to have remained a regional hitmaker, having given up his career after his wife’s death during the ’60s. His son Rendal carries on the family tradition as a guitar player.

 

Sources: various. Wrightman sides and label scan do come from Hillbilly Researcher. Glenn label scans from « 45rpm » blogsite. Picture from hillbilly-music site

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

« The girl on the matchbox cover« [1950]download

« Heartsick and blue« download

« Waiting« download

« I’m losing my tears over you« download

« One of these days« download

« Carried away« download

« Time alone« [1962]download

 

 

 

You can read a lot more on RemWall by clicking this link: http://www.visioncouncil.org/bobrowe/rem_wall.htm

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