Howdy folks ! This is the early July 2018 bopping fortnight selection, which will include 9 tracks, some by ‘great’ names for a change. Let’s begin with the Master of Bluegrass music, Mr. BILL MONROE with his immortal « Rocky Road Blues », released January 14, 1946 done in Chicago, on the Columbia label # 38907, and later reissued in the 20000 serie. A classic in all genres, beyond a rocking mandolin, it has a bopping string-bass solo (Bill Westbrook)

“Rocky Road Blues”

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Billboard April 17, 1954

Then a man whom I know a big nothing about, except he was a Texan. DICK DYSON & his Musical Texans had records between 1947 and 53 on Tri-State (even some square dances), Blue Bonnet, Bullet and Decca. I chose his ultimate release, recorded in Dallas in December 1953 – there remain two unissued songs, among them a promising « Drink My Blues Away » – and TWO Hillbily blues. First the famous (already a minor classic) « I Work In The Daytime (She Works At Night )» and « Purple Wine And Red Red Roses » (Decca 29072). Both are solid boppers, « Wine » being slow ; « Work » is a little faster ; piano is prominent, and a discreet guitar combines the overall sound. These two tracks are even reckoned as R&R classics in Rockin’ Country Style !
decca dyson work“I Work In The Day Time (She Works At Night)”

“Purple Wine And Red Red Roses”

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From August 1955 on the Starday label # 198 GENE TABOR and the double-sided « I’m A Real Gone Jesse (I’m Hot To Trot »)/ »I’m Not The Marryin’ Kind ». Classic (and classy) Starday sound, both sides are co-penned by Red Hayes, who surely handles the fiddle duty. Among him we can speculate Doc Lewis on piano and the usual Starday crew: on steel (Herb Remington), Hal Harris (on lead guitar) and an unidentified bass player.

starday tabor jessestarday tabor marryin'

A Real Gone Jesse”


“I‘m Not The Marryin’ Kind”


From June 1956, this is is the most recent track, The MADDOX BROS. & ROSE on the Columbia label # 21405 (one of the last issues on the Columbia 20000 serie) for another classic, « Ive Got Four Big Brothers (To Look After Me ». Solid, tremendous rockabilly : the Maddoxes could do everything.

“I’ve Got Four Big Brothers (To Look After Me)”

downladcolumbia maddox brothers

Back to Texas with TINY COLBERT in February 1948. He’s been before steel and singer for Eddie Miller and his Oklahomans, and by this time, fronted his Entertainers. On « Bumble Bee Baby » (Blue Bonnet 133): loud, heavy boogie woogie guitar,a lovely piano backing, strong and assured vocal, a jazzy fiddle : a perfect example of Hillbilly boogie. It’s a rocker with 8 to 10 years in advance. Plus, the record must have met a certain success, because Modern, the giant L. A. concern, reissued it per se on Modern 580.

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Bumble Bee Babytiny colbert steel


Finally two tracks by a great. JERRY IRBY had almost a 40 years career, and provided many a good song, be it in the Western swing field or Hillbilly bop. This man (1917-1983) began during the Thirties recording with the Bar-X Cowboys and the Texas Wranglers. He was also vocalist with Bill Mounce. After the War he cut the classic song « Nails In My Coffin » in legendary Goldstar studios; later he was on the Los Angeles Globe record label, whom he recorded the proto-rock’n’roll « Super Boogie Woogie » (Globe 120) for, backed by his faithful pianist Pete Burke and the good steel of Deacon Evans. The former was to follow Irby for the quintessential « Hillbilly Boogie » in 1950 for M-G-M 10809. But the career of Jerry Irby was not over : « Chantilly Lace » (1969) « 49 Women » (Cireco 102 or Polly 201) or « Clickety Clack » (1956). But that piano, and a bluesy guitar (probably Woody Carter) in « Hillbilly Boogie » are pure delight for any Hillbilly bop lover.

Super Boogie Woogieglobe irby super

mgm irby hillbilly“Hillbilly Boogie”


Sources : my own archives ; also 78-world ; Hillbilly Researcher for Dick Dyson tunes.Comments welcome!