Lehman Monroe « Johnny » Tyler was born in Pochontas, Arkansas, on February 6th, 1918. What he made during the Thirties and how he traveled so far to California in the mid-40s is unknown, neither if he had particular talent in his youth for music. He must although have been a good seller in 1946-47, because RCA-Victor made him cut no less than 35 tracks within a year.
Howdy folks! Welcome to new visitors, hi! to returning ones. Here is a new batch of hillbilly bop/rockabillies, taken from various sources (thanks Youtube!) for your own pleasure.
First, a survivor in style. LOUIE BASHELL (and his Silk Umbrella Orchestra !) and « Oklahoma Boogie » (RCA 47-5583, 1954) could well have been issued at least 5 years before, when accordion was in demand and dominated the songs of Pee Wee King, Spade Cooley, Wes Tuttle during the late ’40s. Anyway « Oklahoma Boogie« , with its Western swing flavour, is a driving track.
From the same period I’d assume, 1954-1955 in Oakland, California. CHARLES WAYNE and the Rattlesnake Ramblers for both sides of his Spur issue (# 1245): « Rodeo Time Is Here » and « Rockin’ Rollin’ Rhythm« .Piano well to the fore (barroom style), and a fine vocal. The whole reminds me of 1951 Charlie Graci‘s sides on Cadillac or 20th Fox (« Wilwdood Boogie« ). Charles Wayne was the brother of Black Jack Wayne, a long-forgotten but important figure in the Norther California hillbilly bop scene. A feature on him is in the pipeline.
From Madison, Tennessee on the Logan label (# 3111), the 1959 Rockabilly oriented Hillbilly bop « It Was You » by LONNIE MULLINS. Strong guitar (bass chords) and great urgent vocal. The Logan label issued a mere 40 sides, among them the great « You Tore Your Playhouse Down » by Rabon Sanders (to be heard in the « early January 2012 fortnight’s favourites » article – seach for it with the button). Lonnie Mullins‘ flipside « Since You’ve Gone » was issued on Collector 4449 « Slow Boogie Rockin’ » vol. 5.
From Florida I’d assume on the Jay label (# 72) do come the fine fast duet of JIM & EDITH YOUNG for the very good and aptly named « Hill Billy Moon » from 1957. Flash! Udo Frank corrected me. The disc do come from Sydney, Ohio. Thanks, Udo!
To sum up, two Bluegrass oriented hillbillies. First a slow one, the bluesy (great dobro) « I’m A Loser » from a PINKY PINKSTON (thanks Rock’n’Roll Daddy-O Youtube chain) on the rare Fine-R-Tone label ( 6). Strangely billed « Custom record service », I really have no clue which larger label this one was pressed and distributed by. Maybe Ohio? North Carolina?
DENNIS GOODRICH had his « All Alone » on the Lorain, Ohio Debute label (# 0500). Coincidence! Anyway this is a fine fast Bluegrass number. Hope you will enjoy the selections!
Howdy, folks! We do embark for a new musical journey into Bluegrass, old-time Hillbilly, and border Rockabilly Hillbilly bop.
First from North Wilkesboro, Western North Carolina, do come the CHURCH BROTHERS. Three brothers, Ralph, Bill and Edwin (each’s instrument unknown) and a fourth partner, Ward Eller, provided on the Jim Stanton’s Rich-R-Tone label, later on Drusilla Adams’ Blue Ridge label, a nice serie of enthusiastic tunes between 1951 and 1953, before they were disbanded by the mid-’50s. The elder Bill was playing (certainly guitar) with Roy Hall & his Blue Ridge Entertainers before the WWII, and was joined later by younger brothers. Alas, they were reluctant to travel very far, and, being modest and straightforward country boys, they were less and less involved in music – and more and more tied in their farms and families. Here you can hear the fabulous banjo-led « I Don’t Know What To Do« , which I don’t even know the original issue number of, having picked it from an old Tom Sims’ cassette. This track escaped to Rounder LP 1020, a shame because in my mind it’s by far their best track ever. Final note: the Church Brothers backed Jim Eanes on his regional hit « Missing In Action » (1952).
GRANDPA JONES (Born Louis Jones, 1913 – died 1998) was a banjo player, comedian, and long-time associate with Grand Ole Opry. He had adopted the name ‘Grandpa’ at 22,because he sounded old on the radio. He recorded with Merle Travis and the Delmore Brothers as Brown’s Ferry Four for King (religious sides). Here you can hear his hilarious and stomping « Grandpa’s Boogie » (King 822) from 1948.
CHARLIE MONROE along with famous brother Bill was at the very beginnig of Bluegrass music, but he deliver also some very good Hillbilly, as here with « Down In Caroline » from the ’40s (RCA 48-0391B ). Note the boogie guitar for a song much covered afterwards, e.g. the Church Brothers.
From Texas and a bit later. The first issue on the Gainesville Lin label (Buck Griffin…) by a rather unknown WAYNE JETTON and « A Crazy Mind Plus A Foolish Heart » (Lin 1000). A good average uptempo ballad. Then, on the San Antonio TNT label, a bordering Hillbilly bop/Rockabilly bop, « Be Bopping Baby » (TNT 9009) by RANDY KING, from 1956. Good topical lyrics, and fine backing.
Finally a belter from 1956 by a R&B lady (unusual on Bopping!), « Alabama Rock’n’Roll » by MABEL KING on the Rama (# 200) New York label. Enjoy the selections! ’till then, bye-bye!