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NEWSLETTER #143
Country, Bluegrass & Old Timey
Cliff Carlisle -> Bob Wills & His Texas Playboys

 

   

NEW BOOKS

 
BORDER RADIO: Radio Quacks, Yodelers, Pitchmen, Psychics & Other Amazing Broadcasters by Gene Fowler & Bill Crawford ● BOOK $22.98
Paperback, 360 Pages, essential, counts as three CDs for shipping.
Essential tome for any roots music fan or American historian. This tells the stories of a whole host of mavericks, madmen and eccentrics that populated the airwaves through the border blasting mega-watt radio stations that operated on the Mexican side of the border from the 1930's through the 1970's. Whether it is goat glad miracle medicine man Dr. John R. Brinkley or the majestic Wolfman Jack, there are so many legendary stories captured in this book. This is easily one of my favorite music books of all time and I am happy that we are bringing into the fold here. (JM)

 

NEW DVDS

 
NOTE: Unless otherwise noted all DVDs offered are in NTSC format which means that they will not play on a European DVD players unless you have a multiple format player.
   
JOHNNY CASH New West 8015 Live From Austin, Tx. ● DVD $17.98
14 tracks, highly recommended
Another fine installment in the New West records series of classic Austin City Limits concerts. This features Johnny Cash at a weird point in his career; there wasn't a whole lot going on for Cash's career in 1987, but he was certainly able to put on a fantastic performance. This is a great set, punctuated by appearances by June Carter Cash and Anita Carter. A worthy addition to your Cash collection. (JM)
JOHNNY CASH: (Ghost) Riders In The Sky/ Ballad Of Barbara/ Big River/ Folsom Prison Blues/ I Walk The Line/ I Walk The Line (outro)/ I‘ll Go Somewhere And Sing My Songs Again/ Let Him Roll/ Long Black Veil/ Ring Of Fire/ Sam Stone/ Sunday Mornin‘ Coming Down/ The Wall/ Where Did We Go Right?

 
KRIS KRISTOFFERSON New West 8026 Live From Austin, Texas ● DVD $17.98
16 tracks, 57 min., recommended
Kristofferson, who recorded this material (on September 14, 1981) as part of the Austin City Limits teevee show, is backed here by a top shelf band that includes Donnie Fritts and Glen Clark (of Delbert And Glen) on keys, Tommy McClure on bass, and Billy "I Can Help" Swan on keys, guitar and vocals. Swan apparently was the opening act, though that show is not part of this. The set includes such K. faves as Me And Bobby McGee, You Show Me Yours (And 'll Show You Mine), Sunday Morning Coming Down, Loving Her Was Easier (Than Anything I'll Ever Do Again), Help Me Make It Through The Night, and others. A few of the performances are previously unissued, not having made the final Austin City Limits edit, presumably for time considerations. Kristofferson looks like a black t-shirted stand in for Jesus, but don't hold that against him. Same for his merely serviceable vocals. It would be easy enough to argue that Kristofferson keeps getting better as time passes, that his newest album is his best work. But even so, he always was a talented and influential songwriter. And as this set demonstrates, he had considerable stage presence. (JC)

 
JOE MAPHIS Bear Family BVD 20011 At Town Hall Party ● DVD $31.98
21 tracks, 67 mins, highly recommended
The latest DVD in the series of footage from the legendary "Town Hall Party" features fine singer and brilliant guitarist Joe Maphis from 1958 and 1959. Joe and his twin-necked Mosrite guitar are featured on a selection of songs and instrumentals including some dazzling guitar duets with Merle Travis. On the hot rocker Rockin' Along, Joe's teen protege Larry Collins joins in the fun. Although Joe mostly plays guitar he also demonstrates his prowess on fiddle, banjo and mandolin. There are vocal duets with his wife Rose Lee and guitar/ fiddle duets with the brilliant Fiddlin' Kate Warren. Though the technical quality from rare kinescopes isn't always the greatest the music more than makes up for it. Includes 16 page booklet with detailed notes, photos and full discographical info. (FS)

 
HANK WILLIAMS Mercury 03919-00 The Ultimate Collection ● DVD $39.98
2 CD + 1 DVD , 42 tracks, highly recommended
This came out for the 50th anniversary of Hank's death. It's a fantastic collection, with 2 CDs stuffed full of all the classic songs and just maybe a few that aren't so common. On top of that the DVD features the directors cut of the essential Williams documentary Honkey Tonk Blues with an added 30 minutes plus 15 minutes of bonus features. Superb sound, beautiful packaging--Hank Williams fans will not be disappointed. (JM)

 

NEW COMPACT DISCS

 
CLIFF CARLISLE JSP JSPCD 7768 Volume 2: When I Feel Froggie I'm Gonna Hop ● CD $28.98
Second collection of sides by this superb early country artist features 97 tracks recorded between 1930 and 1941 drawn from 78s in the collection of Joe Bussard. Includes many tracks making their first appearance on CD
CLIFF CARLISLE: A Little Bit Of Loviní From You/ A Little White Rose/ Alone And Lonesome/ Alone And Lonesome/ Birmingham Jail/ Birmingham Jail No. 2/ Blue Dreams/ Blue Eyes/ Blue Yodel No. 6/ Box Car Yodel/ Casey County Jail/ Childhood Dreams/ Childhood Dreams/ Crazy Blues/ Deep Sea Blues/ Desert Blues/ Dollarís All I Crave/ Donít Marry The Wrong Woman/ Down In The Jailhouse On My Knees/ Dream A Little Dream Of Me/ End Of Memory Lane/ Flag That Train/ Fussiní Mama/ Georgia Moon/ Go And Leave Me If You Wish To/ Going Back To Alabama/ Hen Pecked Man/ Hobo Jackís Last Ride/ Hobo Jackís Last Ride/ I Believe Iím Entitled To You/ In A Box Car Around The World/ Iím Glad Iím A Hobo/ Iím Lonely And Blue/ Jesus My All/ Just A Lonely Hobo/ Just A Lonely Hobo/ Just A Wayward Boy/ Just A song At Childhood/ Lonely/ Longing For You/ Look Out Iím Shifting Gears/ Looking For Tomorrow/ Louisiana Blues/ Memories That Make Me Cry/ My Little Sadie/ My Lonely Boyhood Days/ My Old Saddle Horse Is Missing/ My Two Time Mama/ Never No Moí Blues/ No Wedding Bells/ Nobody Wants Me/ On My Way To Lonesome Valley/ On The Lone Prairie/ Rambliní Jack/ Ramshackled Shack On The Hill/ Ridiní That lonesome Train/ Ridiní The Blinds To The Call Of The Pines/ Rocky Road/ Roll On Blue Moon/ She Waits For Me There/ Sheís Waiting For Me/ Shine On Harvest Moon/ Shuffliní Gal/ So Blue/ Sunshine And Daisies/ Sweet As The Roses Of Spring/ Sweet Nannie Lisle/ T For Texas/ That Good Old Utah Trail/ The Bunch Of Cactus On The Wall/ The Cowboy Song/ The Fatal Run/ The Flower Of The Valley/ The Gal I Left Behind/ The Little Dobie Shack/ The Plea Of A Mother/ The Poor Widow/ The Rustlerís Fate/ The Vacant Cabin Door/ The Written Letter/ Thereís A Lamp In The Window Tonight/ They Say It Is The End Of The Trail Old Paint/ Traveling Life Alone/ Two Little Sweethearts/ Valley Of Peace/ Virginia Blues/ When I Feel Froggie Iím Gonna Hop/ When Iím Dead And Gone/ When The Cactus Is In Bloom/ When The Old Cow Went Dry/ When You Wore A Tulip/ Where Southern Roses Climb/ Will You Meet Me Just Inside/ Wonít Somebody Pal With Me/ Wreck Of No. 52/ Your Saddle Is Empty Tonight/ Youíll Never Know

 
THE CARLISLES B.A.C.M. 167 Tennessee Memories ● CD $14.98
26 tracks, 63 mins, recommended
A delightful collection of country songs, novelty songs, gospel, pre rockabilly and country boogies recorded between 1951 and 1954. Starting off with veteran country singers Bill & Cliff Carlisle and Martha Carson the group went through several personnel changes over the years after Cliff and Martha left the group but the lead vocals of Bill and the use of the same group of musicians including fine guitar by Chet Atkins gave a consistency to the group's sound. Many of the songs were written by Bill Carlisle and show a delightful touch for the absurd with songs like Goo-Goo Da-da (Baby Latin Meaning "Daddy")/ Bargain Day Half Off/ It's bedtime Bill and others. There's also straight ahead country numbers like their version of The Louvin BrothersOne My Way To The Show, Martha's composition Tennessee Memories , Cliff's True Love and others. There are also a few gospel songs - Rusty Old Halo/ Leave That Liar Alone and more. (FS)
THE CARLISLES: A Dollar Ain't A Dollar Anymore/ A Rusty Old Halo/ Bargain Day Half Off/ Blue Arizona Moon/ Bye Bye My Love/ Goo Goo Da Da/ He Will Lead Safely/ I Would If I Could But I Can't/ It's Bedtime Bill/ Leave That Liar Alone/ Let Me Hold Your Little Hand/ Maybe More/ Middle Age Spread/ Moody's Goose/ My Happiness Belongs To Someone Else/ Nine Have Tried And Nine Have Died/ On My Way To The Show/ Patch Up Our Old Love Affair/ Pickin' Peas Down Long Pea Row/ Poor Man's Riches/ Teletouch/ Tennessee Memories/ That Little Difference/ This Heart Is Not For Sale/ True Love/ Unpucker

 
THE CARTER SISTERS Country Routes 39 With Mother Maybelle And Chet Atkins ● CD $16.98
Complementing Country Route 35 and 37 this is another great collection of sides drawn from Radiozark transcriptions featuring 40 tracks recorded in 1949 featuring The Carter Sisters accompanied by Chet Atkins who plays on almost every track and takes the lead on eight dynamite guitar solos and three fiddle solos! Mother Maybelle is featured on a dozen sides on lead or harmony vocals and plays banjo on three tracks. Only a handful of these tracks were recorded commercially. Includes I Wish I Had A NIckel/ Please Don't Leave Me Any More, Darling/ No letter Today/ Ragtime Annie/ Whispering Home/ All Broke Out With Love/ tramp On The Street/ Divorce Me C.O.D./ Liebestraum/ A Picture, A Ring And A Curl/ The Kneeling Drunkard's Plea/ A Sinner's Prayer/ Don Juan and more.

 
JOHNNY CASH Columbia-Legacy 94265 Personal File ● CD $24.98
2 CDs, 49 tracks, 139 mins, highly recommended
Johnny Cash's son John Carter Cash and the people at Columbia have unearthed a treasure trove of never-before heard Johnny Cash material. Over two hours of just Johnny Cash, his guitar, songs and stories recorded in the legendary House Of Cash recording studio. About half of the material are Cash originals, the rest is filled up with traditionals, Carter Family songs, and songs by writers he loved like John Prine, Cindy Walker, etc. This is an essential CD for Johnny Cash fans; a more intimate portrait from the man in black has not been released. (JM)

 
EDDIE CLETRO Bear Family BCD 16510 Flying Saucer Boogie ● CD $21.98
26 tracks, recommended
Q: EDDIE CLETRO is an obscure southern California via New Jersey western swing singer who sometimes teetered on the verge of Rockabilly, other times pop, right? A: Sure is, and of course Bear Family has no problem giving him the deluxe treatment with 26 tracks and a 36 page booklet! Wow! Cletro enjoyed the bulk of his success in the early to mid 1950's from whence all of these tracks are culled. Flying Saucer Boogie and Rock 'n' Roll Cowboy are here for the rockabilly collectors, but the bulk of this material is definitely of the western persuasion. The bulk of this material is also very good and by and large the sound is fantastic. Eddie Cletro was also fine without the spotlight, employing various front men and women throughout these recordings. Two tracks feature Eddie Dean on vocal, four Feature Rose Maddox (& Retta Maddox on one of those) and Donna Reynolds takes the lead on four tracks as well. Biographical material is a great read, original recording info is also included. (JM)

 
TOMMY COLLINS B.A.C.M. 165 Think It Over Boys ● CD $14.98
25 tracks, 63 mins, highly recommended
Splendid collection of honky tonk country, novelty songs and the occasional gospel number from this brilliant singer and songwriter and pioneer of the Bakersfield sound. Recorded between 1953 and 1956 and accompanied by musicians like Buck Owens, Roy Nichols, Ralph Mooney, "Fuzzy" Owen and others he performs songs (nearly all self written) like Let Me Love You/ High On A Hilltop/ No Love Have I/ I'll Be Gone/ What Kind Of Sweetheart Are You/ Those Old Love Letters From You/ Feet Of The Traveler/ Think It Over Boys/ Upon This Rock and others. This set also includes his worst song - the utterly stupid Boob I Lak but one dud out of 25 isn't bad. (FS)
TOMMY COLLINS: A Man We Ought To Know/ Are You Ready To Go/ Boob I Lak/ Feet Of The Traveler/ High On A Hilltop/ I Always Get A Souvenir/ I Guess I'm Crazy/ I Love You More And More Each Day/ I Think Of You Yet/ I Wish I Had Died In My Cradle/ I'll Always Speak Well Of You/ I'll Be Gone/ Let Down/ Let Me Love You/ Love A Me S'il Vous Plait/ No Love Have I/ Smooth Sailin'/ That's The Way Love Is/ There'll Be No Other/ Think It Over Boys/ Those Old Love Letters From You/ Untied/ Upon This Rock/ Wait A Little Longer/ What Kind Of Sweetheart Are You

 
THE DELMORE BROTHERS JSP JSPCD 7765 Volume 2 - The Later Years, 1933-1952 ● CD $28.98
Four CD box set with 97 tracks complementing JSPCD 7727 by this great brother duo.
THE DELMORE BROTHERS: Ainít It Hard To Love/ Alcatraz Island Blues/ Baby Youíre Throwing Me Down/ Barnyard Boogie/ Be My Little Pet/ Blues Stay Away From Me/ Brother Take Warning/ Brownís Ferry Blues/ Brownís Ferry Blues No.3/ Bury Me Under The Weeping Willow/ By The Banks Of The Rio Grande/ Calling To That Other Shore/ Carry Me Back To Alabama/ Donít Forget Me/ Donít Forget Me Darling/ Donít Let Me Be In The Way/ Down Home Boogie/ Everybody Loves Her/ Fast Express/ Fifty Miles To Travel/ Freight Train Boogie/ Gamblerís Yodel/ Gathering Flowers From The Hillside/ Goiní Back To Georgia/ Goiní Back To The Blue Ridge Mountains/ Gonna Lay Down My Old Guitar No.2/ Good Time Saturday Night/ Harmonica Blues/ Heart Of Sorrow/ Hey, Hey Iím Memphis Bound/ Hillbilly Boogie/ Home On The River/ I Ainít Gonna Stay Here Long/ I Believe It For My Mother Told Me So/ I Donít Know Why I Love Her/ I Found An Angel/ I Guess Iíve Got To Be Going/ I Know Iíll Be Happy In Heaven/ I Let The Freight Train Carry Me On/ I Loved You Better Than You Know/ I Wonder Where My Darling Is Tonight/ Iíll Never Fall In Love Again/ Iím Alabama Bound/ Iím Going Back To Alabama/ Iím Leaviní You/ Iím Leaviní You/ Iím Lonesome Without You/ Iím Sorry I Caused You To Cry/ Just The Same Sweet Thing To Me/ Kentucky Mountain/ Last Night I Was Your Only Darling/ Leaviní On That Train/ Lonely Moon/ Lonesome Day/ Look Up, Look Down That Lonesome Road/ Memories Of My Carolina Girl/ Midnight Special/ Midnight Train/ Mississippi Shore/ Mobile Boogie/ My Homeís Across The Blue Ridge Mountains/ New False Hearted Girl/ Nothing But The Blues/ Now Iím Free/ Peach Tree Streeet Boogie/ Please Be My Sunshine/ Precious Jewel/ Prisonerís Farewell/ Quit Treatiní Me Mean/ Rambliní Minded Blues/ Remember I Feel Lonesome Too/ Rounderís Blues/ Shame On Me/ She Left Me Standing On The Mountain/ She Wonít Be My Little Darling/ Some Of These Days Youíre Gonna Be Sad/ Somebody Elseís Darling/ Stop That Boogie/ Sweet, Sweet Thing/ Tennessee Choo Choo/ Thatís How I Feel So Goodbye/ The Farmerís Girl/ The Fast Old Shovel/ The Girl By The River/ The Only Star/ The Storms Are On The Ocean/ The Trail Of Time/ The Wabash Cannonball Blues/ The Wrath Of God/ Thereís A Lonesome Road/ Thereís Sumpiní About Love/ Trouble Ainít Nothiní But The Blues/ Used Car Blues/ Waitiní For That Train/ Whoís Gonna Be Lonesome For Me/ Why Did You Leave Me Dear/ Wonderful There

 
KINKY FRIEDMAN Shout Factory 10155 Last Of The Jewish Cowboys - The Best Of Kinky Friedman ● CD $14.98
15 tracks, 51 mins, highly recommended
As I write this, the honorable Kinky Friedman has fallen short of becoming the next Governor of Texas; he did, however, get half a million votes, which is probably more than he has sold of any of his records. Kinky is a helluva performer, but definitely not everyone's cup of tea. To use a simple comic book metaphor/formula: If Hank Williams was Superman and Johnny Cash was Batman, then Kinky Friedman would be the Fabulous Furry Freak brothers. you know what I mean? This features such sentimental favorites as The Ballad of Charles Whitman ("There was a rumor, about a tumor."), Asshole From El Paso (his answer record to Okie From Muskogee,) Somethin's Wrong With The Beaver, Sold American, and his biggest hit, They Ain't Making Jews Like Jesus Anymore. Kinky Friedman is one of a kind and you'll either vote for him or against him, he conjures no neutral reactions. (JM)

 
BUD ISAACS Bear Family BCD 16798 Bud's Bounce ● CD $21.98
25 tracks, 56 minutes, essential
Bootlegs excluded, Bud Isaacs' pedal steel instrumentals for RCA Victor have never been collected on LP or compact disc until now. Musically, Isaacs wasn't as dynamic as Speedy West, as transcendent as Jerry Byrd or as complex as Buddy Emmons. And despite what annotator Eddie Stubbs claims, he wasn't the first steel player on record to conquer the instrument's limitations through string-bending foot pedals. However, Isaacs remains an innovative, appealing stylist. His benchmark performance on Webb Pierce's 1953 hit Slowly instantly consigned conventional lap steels into retrodom. Chet Atkins brokered an RCA contract for the southern Indiana native in 1954. Besides playing on the guitarist's classic "A Session with Chet Atkins" album, Isaacs' RCA stint yielded eight singles and an EP before a draft notice abruptly ended his recording career in 1956. With Atkins present on one side of the studio glass or the other, Isaacs's records have an appealing Atkinsesque feel. None of his singles were major hits - postwar C&W instrumentals never were - but they influenced a generation of musicians. Hot Mocking Bird and Bud's Bounce quickly entered the standard steel guitar repertoire. Fiddler Dale Potter shares breaks with Atkins on some numbers. This set includes four previously unissued titles and an alternate issued take of Bud's Bounce. The sound quality is exquisite, sourced from the full-track mono masters. Eddie Stubbs contributes thorough if overly Nashville-centric notes. Well worth having and most importantly, it holds up to repeated plays. (DS)
Hot Mocking Bird/The Waltz You Saved for Me/Bud's Steel Guitar Stomp/Indian Love Call/Skokiaan/Bud's Boogie/Yesterday's Waltz/Cowboy Conga/Panhandle Rag/Beautiful Mahana/Steel Guitar Breakdown/Kentucky Waltz/Turn Around/Steelin' Home/By the Waters of Minnetonka/Blue Mirage/Waltz of the Ozarks/Bud's Bounce/Texas Playboy Rag/Westphalia Waltz/Boing!/Bud's Waltz/Sweet and Hot/Bohemiana Polka/Buds Bounce (alt)

 
WANDA JACKSON Ace CDCHD 1125 The Very Best Of The Country Years ● CD $18.98
30 tracks, 65 mins, highly recommended
Although I especially love Wanda Jackson's Rock `N' Roll songs, I still have to give credit to her long and excellent Country music career. Wanda started as a teenager singing for Country legend Hank Thompson's band, which led her to a Decca records contract of her own. Her Decca contract lasted for a total of seven singles, only one of which, a duet with fellow Thompson band member called You Can't Have My Love, even reached the lower regions of the charts. Following her graduation from high school, she signed with Capitol records, a label that she would stay with for the next 13 years. All of the tracks on this CD are from official Capitol records releases and all but one (1958's I Wanna Waltz) were recorded between 1961 - 1972. Essentially this is a greatest hits and overview of her career as a Country music singer. All of her singles that charted are here, mixed with outstanding album tracks. Ace has already done the retrospective on Wanda's Rock `N' Roll career; now they do an equally fine job on this phase of her career. I grew up on Wanda Jackson's Country and R&R recordings, but I have never heard any of her Gospel outings. With her magnificent voice, I can imagine there is some good stuff in there as well. Maybe Ace will go all-out and provide us with a third installment? (JM)

 
KARL & HARTY B.A.C.M. 168 Old Time Harmony Singing ● CD $14.98
21 tracks, 62 minutes, recommended
Major figures on radio and record through the thirties, Karl Davis & Harty Taylor have rarely been tapped for reissues. Their singing style - recalling the 19th-Century parlor balladry of their idols Lester McFarland and Robert Gardner (Mac & Bob) - is admittedly a generation removed from the crooning and/or high-energy "brother" duets that followed in their wake. However, many close-harmony duet singers cited Karl & Harty as an influence, and their most popular songs still endure. Natives of Renfro Valley, Kentucky, Karl & Harty moved to Chicago in 1931 to become a featured act within WLS's popular string band, The Cumberland Ridge Runners. After making their first recordings for Paramount, the duo hit their stride in 1934 after signing with ARC. Such Davis-penned or collaborative songs as Kentucky, I'm Just Here to Get My Baby Out of Jail and A Prisoner's Dream became country harmony standards. By the 1940s Karl & Harty were continually at odds with their record companies, which demanded racier, upbeat jukebox novelties. Though Davis penned suitable numbers, the duo's performances were perfunctory. In 1951 the men dissolved their act rather than further compromising their ideals. This collection sidesteps Karl & Harty's best-known songs from the mid-'30s in favor of traditional material and lesser-known originals. Two songs are from Paramount and fourteen are from ARC/Columbia, including We Buried Her Beneath the Willow, a tribute to the Ridge Runners' recently deceased vocalist Linda Parker. Five Capitol and Gold Seal sides capture the waning days of their recording career. The sound quality is adequate, though lacking high end. Brian Chalker's notes distill the duo's fascinating and ultimately heartbreaking story. A welcome release, if not the definitive anthology Karl & Harty really deserve. The correct song sequence is below. (DS)
Also Available: Cattle CCD 245 Memories of the WLS National Barn Dance( $18.98) Twenty-six Karl & Harty tracks, no duplications with the above B.A.C.M. Songs include I'm Just Here to Get My Baby Out of Jail, The Prisoner's Dream and Don't Monkey 'Round My Widder
Twenty-One Years/I Wonder How the Old Folks Are at Home/I Dreamed I Searched Heaven for You/We Buried Her Beneath the Willow/No Place to Pillow My Head/Tennessee River Farewell/Answer to the Prisoner's Dream/Two-Faced Preacher/Don't Be Blue Little Pal/I'll Always Love You/I Hide My Face and Cry/You Let Me Down/Truck Driver's Sweetheart/What's Wrong with the Women Today/Ain't You Ashamed/She's Got the Cutest Eyes/Single Man Blues/Down in the Valley/You Cooked Your Goose with Me/Don't Mix Whiskey with Women/I'm Coming Home This Evening

 
KRIS KRISTOFFERSON New West 6098 Live From Austin, Texas ● CD $16.98
CD, 16 tracks, 54 min., recommended
You put him in front of a talented band of total pros and he doesn't sound half bad--it's just the half that sings flat that assaults the ears, occasionally. But after a while the songs push such thoughts right away (even newer material such as Nobody Loves Anybody Anywhere is praiseworthy), but never very far. So, while he includes his best numbers, circa 1981, his performance is still bound by his natural limitations. All things considered though, this set does an excellent job of capturing K. at a particularly bright moment in his musical development, and since he was one of the most influential songwriters of his generation, that's something worth hearing. (JC)

 
JIMMY MARTIN Gusto-Delux 0603 Jimmy Martin's 20 Greatest Hits ● CD $8.98
20 tracks, recommended
Previously issued as Deluxe 7863. Jimmy Martin is one of the great voices in bluegrass and his classic recordings for Decca and RCA are the equal of almost anybody else in the genre. Like most of Decca's traditional country artists he was dropped by the label in the 70s and started recording for Gusto from where these recordings come. His singing was still fine and his band The Sunny Mountain Boys (no personell is listed) provide solid accompaniments on banjo, fiddle, dobro & bass. The songs are a mixture of remakes of his more popular Decca songs along with old bluegrass and country standards - Freeborn Man/ Pete, The Best Coon Dog In The State Of Tennessee/ Uncle Pen/ Blue Moon Of Kentucky/ Honey, You Don't Know My Mind/ Widow Maker/ I Know You're Married (But I Love You Still)/ Run Pete Run/ One Woman Man/ Taylor Made Sally Good and more. Very nice indeed. (FS)

 
THE MASTERS FAMILY Cattle 327 Back In The Good Ole Days, 1948-1954 ● CD $18.98
24 tracks, 63 mins, essential
A fabulous collection of old time country gospel plus a couple of secular songs by Johnnie & Lucille Masters and their son Owen recorded between 1948 and 1954. Most of the tracks feature them accompanied by guitar and mandolin with various other additional instruments including some wonderful piano, Dobro and on some of the later tracks steel guitar by Don Helms. Most of the songs here were written by Johnnie Masters and include That Little Old Country Church/ Gloryland March and Cry From The Cross which have become country gospel standards. If you liked the recent release by James Roberts and Martha Carson you're sure to love this too. (FS)
THE MASTERS FAMILY: Back In The Good Old Days/ From Forty To Sixty-five/ Glory Land March/ Hand Me Down My Silver Trumpet/ Happiness Comes On Spiritual Wings/ I Have Changed/ I Won't Have To Cross Jordan Alone/ It's All Coming True/ Just A Sinner Saved By Grace/ Marching On To Glory/ My Heart's Like A Beggar/ New World To Come/ Noah And The Mighty Ark/ Singing In The Promised Land/ Southbound Passenger Train/ Swing Wide Ye Golden Gates/ That Little Old Country Church/ The Cry From The Cross/ The Man Of Galilee/ They've Made A New Bible/ When He Heard My Plea/ When The Wagon Was New/ While The Ages Roll On/ You Gotta Pray

 
SMILEY MAXEDON Cattle 325 A Hillbilly Voice Like Dynamite ● CD $18.98
20 tracks, 52 mins, recommended
Another fine country performer rescued from oblivion by Cattle Records. Roy "Smiley" Maxedon was originally from Illinois but settled in California in the 40s where he formed his band The Okaw Valley Boys featuring the great electric guitarist Roy Nichols who may be taken the hot solos on a few of the songs here. Prior to this release the only other reissue of Maxedon was of his fine bluesy western swing flavored number Give Me A Red Hot Mama And An Ice Cold Beer - this is here along with all the rest of his issued recordings cut between 1951 and 1955 and is a nice mix of slow and mid tempo honky tonk numbers all sung with his distinctive dark baritone voice and accompanied by a solid group of musicians. (FS)
SMILEY MAXEDON: Blue As Blue Can Be/ Crazy To Care/ Give Me A Red Hot Mama And An Ice Cold Beer/ Give Me Your Love For Awhile/ I Want You/ I'll Swear You Don't Love Me/ I'm Shuttin' The Door On Love/ If I Should Change My Ways (would You Still Love Me?)/ In The Window Of My Heart/ Little Brother Joe/ Oh, Why Did I Cheat?/ Sunshine In The Rain/ That's All Right/ Too Late To Cry Over You/ Until Then/ We Can't Live Together/ What Good Is My Love (if It's Wasted)/ Why Can't You Look Me In The Eye/ You've Lost Too Much/ Your Old Love Letters

 
WILLIE NELSON DBK Works 124 54 Songs: The Songwriter Sessions ● CD $35.98
3 CDs, 54 tracks, 140 mins, highly recommended
Outstanding collection. Willie Nelson is the greatest living Country songwriter and here's a three CD set bursting at the seams with proof to that argument. You don't get the hits that Willie recorded, or hits by others like Hello Walls or Crazy, (you do get an early recording of Willie doing Night Life); instead, you get fantastic nuggets of gold like I Let My Mind Wander/ The Ghost, Half A Man/ Pride Wins Again/ Happiness Lives Next Door, and so many more great tunes. A lot of the tracks on this appeared on big label releases during the 1960s, but what you get here for the most part are the demo, or stripped down, versions without the Countrypolitan RCA productions. Tracks are recorded between the late 1950s through the 1960s, although booklet information isnt very clear on the matter. Great stuff! (JM)

 
WEBB PIERCE Acrobat ADDCD 3026 The Complete Four Star & Pacemaker Recordings ● CD $14.98
Two CD set with 30 tracks featuring the complete Four Star and Pacemaker recordings recorded by Webb in 1949 and 1950 before his signing with Decca and his numerous hits.

 
TEX RITTER B.A.C.M. 171 Pledge Of Allegiance ● CD $14.98
27 tracks recorded between 1948 and 1956 featuring the deep dark vocal stylings of Maurice Woodward "Tex" Ritter. The emphasis on western flavored songs and includes his famous theme song from the movie "High Noon" Do Not Forsake Me plus Long Black Rifle/ Marshall Of Wichita/ Last Wagon/ Remember The Alamo/ Marshall's Daughter/ A Whale Of A tale/ Cool water/ San Antonio Rose/ Paul Bunyan Love, etc.

 
THE TURNER BROTHERS/ KENTUCKY BOYS Cattle 326 Honky Tonk Boys, 1947-1954 ● CD $18.98
The Turner Brothers (Monroe "Lige" Turner and Ulysses "Red" Turner) are featured on 22 songs here from 1947. They perform in the old timne brother style of The Blue Sky Boys or Delmore Brothers though not as interesting. They accompany themselves on the familiar guitar and mandolin with occasional added musicians on electric guitar (usually Roy Lanham), fiddle and steel guitar. There are four cuts by the Kentucky Boys (aka Zeka & Red) featuring "Red" Turner with James Grimshaw "Zeke" Turner who were not related. They perform in a more lively Carlisles style with a small group including some great fiddle by Fredie Langdon.
THE KENTUCKY BOY: A Little Feller Like Mine/ Don't Fetch It/ THE TURNER BROTHERS: A Mother's Love/ All Night Long/ Beautiful Rose/ Boog Boog Boogie/ Corene Corena/ Could You Take Me Back?/ God's Own Little Lamb/ Honky Tonk Mama/ I'll Live My Life For You/ It's Better To Be Alone/ Kentucky/ Matthew Twenty-four/ Precious Memories/ Rainbow In The Sky/ Something's Wrong/ The Fallen Leaf/ The Leaf Of Love/ To Be Or Not To Be/ When The Fire Comes Down/ Why Did You Leave Me?/ You Ask Me Why I'm Crying/ You'll Cry For Me/ ZEKE & RED: Get Your Dad Burn Fingers Offa Me/ The World Would Be A Better Place If It Was A Farm

 
VARIOUS ARTISTS Country Stars 55499 You've Got To Walk That Lonesome Valley ● CD $11.98
Fine collection of old time and bluegrass gospel - mostly from the late 30s through the late 50s. Includes sides by The Monroe Brothers, Charlie Monroe, Bill Monroe, The Stanley Brothers, Flatt & Scruggs, The Lilly Brothers, Mac Wiseman, Sonny Osborne, Reno & Smiley and Ricky Skaggs & Keith Whitley.
FLATT & SCRUGGS: Back To The Cross/ Bouquet In Heaven/ God Loves His Children/ THE LILLY BROTHERS: What Are They Doing In Heaven Today/ BILL MONROE: Cryin' Holy Unto My Lord/ I Saw The Light/ Little Community Church/ Lord Protect My Soul/ What Would You Give In Exchange For Your Soul/ Wicked Path Of Sin/ CHARLIE MONROE: O Death/ You'd Better Be Somewhere Praying/ THE MONROE BROS: Do You Call That Religion/ World Is Not My Home/ You've Got To Walk That Lonesome Valley/ SONNY OSBORNE: Old Cross Road/ RENO & SMILEY: Hear Jerusalem Mourn/ I'm Using My Bible For A Roadmap/ RICKY SKAGGS & KEITH WHITLEY: Darkest Hour Is Just Before Dawn/ My Main Trial Is Yet To Come/ Wings Of Angels/ THE STANLEY BROTHERS: Angels Are Singing (In Heaven Tonight)/ Gathering Flowers For The Master's Bouquet/ Vision Of Mother/ We'll Be Sweethearts In Heaven/ White Dove/ MAC WISEMAN: Little White Church

 
VARIOUS ARTISTS Golden Stars 5421 This Is What I Call Country Gospel ● CD $15.98
Three Cd set of country gospel from the 40s, 50s and 60s. 45 tracks in all featuring Red Foley, Patsy Cline, Merle Travis, The Oak Ridge Boys, Carl Perkins, The Blackwood Brothers, Ralph Staley with Ricky Skags & Keith WHitley, Prophets Quartet, Sons Of The PIoneers, Hank Snow, Hank Williams, The Jordanaires, George Jones, Connie Smith, The Monroe Brothers and more.
ROY ACUFF: It Won't Be Long/ EDDY ARNOLD: May The Good Lord Bless And Keep You/ THE BLACKWOOD BROTHERS: Family Of God/ BOXCAR WILLIE: I Saw The Light/ THE CARTER FAMILY: Can The Circle Be Unbroken (bye And Bye)/ THE CHUCK WAGON GANG: After The Sunrise/ PATSY CLINE: Dear God/ Just A Closer Walk With Thee/ RED FOLEY: Peace In The Valley/ STUART HAMBLEN: This Ole House/ GEORGE JONES: I'll Fly Away/ Old Brush Arbors/ THE JORDANAIRES: I'm Working On A Building/ PEE WEE KING: Everytime I Feel The Spirit/ HANK LOCKLIN: Harvest Is Ripe (the Labourers Are Few)/ BILL MONROE: Walking In Jerusalem/ THE MONROE BROTHERS: You've Got To Walk That Lonesome Valley/ THE OAK RIDGE BOYS: I Know/ TOMMY OVERSTREET: In The Garden/ Rock Of Ages/ DOLLY PARTON: Letter To Heaven/ CARL PERKINS: Hallelujah Special/ THE PROPHETS QUARTET: Ol' Time Religion/ JIM REEVES: Padre Of Old San Antone/ Shall We Gather At The River (mother Went A Walkin')/ TEX RITTER: Rounded Up In Glory/ MARTY ROBBINS: Kneel And Let The Lord Take Your Load/ CONNIE SMITH: What Child Is This/ HANK SNOW: Gloryland March/ THE SONS OF THE PIONEERS: One More River/ That Old Rugged Cross/ RALPH STANLEY WITH RICKY SKAGGS & KEITH WHITLE: Leaning On The Everlasting Arm/ CARL STORY: My Lord Keeps A Record/ HANK THOMPSON: When God Calls His Children Home/ MERLE TRAVIS: God Put A Rainbow In The Clouds/ I Am A Pilgrim/ ERNEST TUBB: Farther Along/ What A Friend We Have In Jesus/ KITTY WELLS: Don't Wait For The Last Minute To Pray/ Gathering Flowers For The Masters Bouquet/ SLIM WHITMAN: Lord Help Me Be As Thou/ HANK WILLIAMS: Calling You/ House Of Gold/ TEX WILLIAMS: Daddy Sang Bass/ BOB WILLS & TOMMY DUNCAN: No Disappointment In Heaven

 
VARIOUS ARTISTS Jasmine JSMCD 3574 A Tribute To Hank Williams ● CD $11.98
25 tracks, 69 mins, highly recommended
A nicely put together tribute to the greatest country singer and songwriter of all time. About half the songs are tributes to hank including Ode To Hank Williams by Ramblin' Lou, The Life Story Of Hank Williams by Hawkshaw Hawkins, the incredibly moving The Death of Hank Williams by Jack Cardwell (recorded a week after Hank's death this was the only tribute song to make the country charts), Guest Star In Heaven by Earney Vandagriff and others. Most of the rest is versions of Hank's songs including several that Hank never recorded commercially including Zeb Turner's Never Been So Lonesome - a song that bears a resemblance to Long Gone Lonesome Blues. Hank's old friend from Alabama, Braxton Schuffert is featured (as Braxton Schooford) on three songs written by Hank that were not issued commercially including the fine Rockin' Chair Daddy which Hank and Schuffert co-wrote though only Hank received composer credit. Ferlin Huskys does a version of Tommy Collins' Hank's Song which string together a bunch of Hank titles into a song. The set also includes a fine instrumental Swing Shift Bounce by Hank's great band, The Drifting Cowboys. Excellent sound and informative notes by Al turner round out a very satisfying package. (FS)

 
VARIOUS ARTISTS Jasmine 3575 Hillbilly Hot Rod & Automobile Songs ● CD $11.98
24 tracks, 62 mins, highly recommended
It is a bit of a paradox, I can't stand Nascar, but yet I love Hillbillies singing about hot rods.this sure is a swell compilation. The first thing that jumped out at me was how Arthur (Guitar Boogie) Smith & His Cracker-Jacks's cover of Arkie Shibley and His Mountain Dew Boys's Hot Rod Race was a lot hotter than the original, which was also clearly the inspiration (i.e. deserves a big royalty check) for Hot Rod Lincoln. Also included is a sequel Hot Rod Race No. 2 by Bob Williams & The Nite Owls and even a third installment by Bob Williams, you could almost do a whole compilation of that song and it's descendants, but I digress--back to the race. This is chock full of red hot fuel injected Country Western and Western Swing, ranging from the novelty Grandpappy's Hot Rod Blues by Grandpappy Earl Davis to a still Country fried Bill Haley & The Saddlemen roaring in with a cover of Rocket 88. This is great start to finish with other rodders like Tillman Franks, Tennesse Buck, Jimmie Heap, Shot Jackson, Luke McDaniel, Slim Rhodes, Billy Briggs and many more. Excellent notes by Al Turner and consistently great sound. (JM)
BILLY BRIGGS: The Battery To My Heart/ FLOYD COMPTON: She Won't Turn Over For Me/ GRANDPAPPY EARL DAVIS: Grandpappy's Hot Rod Blues/ TILLMAN FRANKS: Hot Rod-shotgun Boogie No 2/ BILL HALEY: Rocket "88"/ JIMMIE HEAP: Honk Your Horn/ SHOT JACKSON: I'm Trading You In On A Later Model/ DON JOHNSON: Flying Low/ JIMMY LITTLEJOHN: No Parking Here/ LUKE MCDANIEL: The Automobile Song/ RAMBLIN' LOU: Car - Hoppin' Mama/ JOHNNY RECTOR: If You Drink, Don't Drive/ SLIM RHODES: Sixty Days/ RICKY RIDDLE: Drivin' Down The Wrong Side Of The Road/ ARTHUR (GUITAR BOOGIE) SMITH: Hot Rod Race/ DRIFTING JOHNNY SMITH: Service Station Blues/ THE SOUTHERNAIRS: Hot Rod Blues/ GEORGE STOGNER: Hardtop Race/ TENNESSEE BUCK: Automobile Song/ JACK TURNER: Model T Baby/ PAUL TUTMARK: Midget Auto Blues/ PAUL WESTMORELAND: Hot Rod Rag/ BOB WILLIAMS: Hot Rod Race No 2/ Hot Rod Race No 3

 
VARIOUS ARTISTS Rev-Ola 129 Country Goes Rock 'n' Roll, Vol. 1 - The Old Guard ● CD $17.98
Fine collection of 32 trackls of rocking country and hillbilly boogie from the period around the birth of rock 'n' roll (1953-1955) by established country artists adjusting to the changes. Includes sides by The Carlisles, Moon Mullican, The Maddox Brothers & Rose,  Bob Wills & The Texas Playboys, Faron Young, Jim Gatlin, Cliffie Stone Orch., Harmonica Frank, Jack Cardwell and others. 8 page booklet with notes by Dave penney and a bunch of artist photos and label shots.
EDDY ARNOLD: Hep Cat Baby/ JIMMY ATKINS & HIS PINETOPPERS: Juke Joint Johnny/ JACK CARDWELL: Whiskey, Women And Loaded Dice/ THE CARLISLES: Doggie Joe/ Rattlesnake Daddy/ LITTLE JIMMY DICKENS: Salty Boogie/ HARMONICA FRANK FLOYD: Rockin' Chair Daddy/ RED FOLEY: Pinball Boogie/ TENNESSEE ERNIE FORD: Catfish Boogie/ TILLMAN FRANKS: Hayride Boogie/ JIM GATLIN: Would It Matter At All?/ HARDROCK GUNTER: Gonna Dance All Night/ HAWKSHAW HAWKINS: Waitin' For My Baby (rock Rock)/ JOHNNY HICKS & HIS TROUBADOURS: Pick Up Blues/ SHORTY LONG: Who Said I Said That?/ THE MADDOX BROTHERS & ROSE: You Won't Believe This/ GRADY MARTIN: Long John Boogie/ Pork Chop Stomp/ SKEETS MCDONALD: Look Who's Crying Now/ MOON MULLICAN: Rocket To The Moon/ WADE RAY: Idaho Red/ JACK RHODES LONE STAR BUDDIES: Eternity/ MARTY ROBBINS: That's All Right/ TOMMY SCOTT & HIS RAMBLERS: Cat Music/ CARL SMITH: Go, Boy Go/ CLIFFIE STONE: Barracuda/ THE TENNESSEE DRIFTERS: Boogie Woogie Baby/ MERLE TRAVIS: I'll Have Myself A Ball/ BOB WILLS AND HIS TEXAS PLAYBOYS: Cadillac In Model "a"/ MALCOLM YELVINGTON: Drinkin' Wine Spodee-o-dee/ FARON YOUNG: If You Ain't Lovin' (you Ain't Livin')/ TEX ZARIO: Go Man Go, Get Gone

 
VARIOUS ARTISTS Smithsonian Folkways 40160 Friends Of Old Time Music - The Folk Arrival, 1961-65 ● CD $36.98
3 CD box set, 55 tracks, 163 mins, essential
Imagine being able to attend a series of concerts featuring such artists as Doc Watson, Fred McDowell, Maybelle Carter, Hobart Smith, Roscoe Holcomb, The Stanley Brothers, Bill Monroe & The Bluegrass Boys, Dock Boggs, Jesse Fuller, Bessie Jones & The Georgia Sea Island Singers, Mississippi John Hurts and Joseph Spence - are you in heaven? No, New York in the early 60s thanks to the efforts of The Friends Of Old Time Music founded by Ralph Rinzler, John Cohen and Israel Young who put on a series of 14 concerts between 1961 and 1965 presenting these and numerous other great traditional performers - many of them appearing before a city audience for the first time. Fortunately for us many of these concerts were recorded by Peter K. Siegel who selected 55 performances for this magnificent box set - most of them never before issued. The artists are all at the peak of their powers and this set features one glorious performance after another. Sound quality is outstanding and the set is housed in a handsome 12x6" box with 60 page 12x6" book with extensive notes on the organization, the concerts and a discussion of each performance and is crammed with photos and reproductions of the concert posters. A year end gift to traditional music lovers from Smithsonian Folkways. (FS)
CLARENCE ASHLEY: The Coo Coo Bird/ THE CLARENCE ASHLEY GROUP: Amazing Grace/ Maggie Walker Blues/ HORTON BARKER: The Miller's Will/ ANNIE BIRD: The Wandering Boy/ DOCK BOGGS: Down South Blues/ Poor Boy In Jail/ The Country Blues/ GAITHER CARLTON AND DOC WATSON: Brown's Dream/ Double File/ MAYBELLE CARTER: Bury Me Under The Weeping Willow/ Foggy Mountain Top/ He‘s Solid Gone/ Sugar Hill/ The Storms Are On The Ocean/ JOHN DAVIS AND THE GEORGIA SEA ISLAND SINGERS: Riley/ JESSE FULLER: Buck And Wing/ Cincinnati Blues/ Guitar Lesson/ Rockin' Boogie/ San Francisco Bay Blues/ Stranger Blues/ THE GREENBRIAR BOYS: Amelia Earhart's Last Flight/ ROSCOE HOLCOMB: East Virginia Blues/ John Henry/ Rising Sun Blues/ MISSISSIPPI JOHN HURT: Coffee Blues/ Frankie And Albert/ My Creole Belle/ BESSIE JONES AND THE GEORGIA SEA ISLAND SINGERS: Before This Time Another Year/ FRED MCDOWELL: Going Down To The River/ Write Me A Few Of Your Lines/ BILL MONROE AND HIS BLUE GRASS BOYS: Grey Eagle/ I Saw The Light/ Live And Let Live/ Lord, Build Me A Cabin In Glory/ Shady Grove/ The Brakeman's Blues/ Walkin' The Dog/ THE NEW LOST CITY RAMBLERS: Jordan Is A Hard Road To Travel/ MCKINLEY PEEBLES: Tell Me Why You Like Roosevelt/ ARTHUR SMITH: Hell Among The Yearlings/ HOBART SMITH: Soldier‘s Joy/ JOSEPH SPENCE: Bimini Gal/ THE STANLEY BROTHERS: Hard Times/ Have A Feast Here Tonight/ Mansions For Me/ The Dream Of The Miner's Child/ STANLEY THOMPSON: Kneelin' Down Inside The Gate/ DOC WATSON: Hicks' Farewell/ DOC AND ARNOLD WATSON: I'm Troubled/ Short Life Of Trouble/ THE WATSON FAMILY: Lonely Tombs/ ED YOUNG AND EMMA RAMSAY: Chevrolet

 
BILLY WALKER Gusto-Deluxe 7706 20 Greatest Hits ● CD $10.98
Previously available as Deluxe 7825. Enjoyable collection of 20 sides recorded in the 70s or 80s by this fine Texas singer. Billy has had a hitmaking career going back to the mid 50s and this selection is mostly remakes of his hits like Charlie's Shoes/ Matamoros/ When A Man Loves A Woman/ Cross The Brazos At Waco/ She Goes Walking Through My Mind/ A Million And One/ Circumstances and others.

 
BOB WILLS & THE TEXAS PLAYBOYS Country Routes 34 In Hollywood, 1943-1944 ● CD $16.98
30 tracks from incredibly rare Armed Forces radio transcriptions, film soundtracks and a demo acetate cut in 1943 and 1944 during the commercial recording ban. Musicians on these sessions includes Jesse Ashlock, Louie Tierney, Alex Brashear, Jimmy Wyble, Millard Kelso, Joe Holley, Noel Boggs and others including fine jazz trumpeter Chuck Mackey who never otherwise recorded with Wills. Most of the vocals are from the great Tommy Dunacn along with contributions from Wills himself and Laura Lee Owens. Includes San Antonion Rose/ Miss Molly/ 8th Of january/ Ida Red/ Oh Henry (featuring Bob's father "Uncle" John Wills on fiddle)/ My Confession/ Sunbonnet Sue/ Too Late/ Home In San Antone/ Ida Red, etc. Excellent sound and 20 page booklet has informed notes by Kevin Coffey.
BOB WILLS: 8th of January/ Betcha My Heart I Love You/ Bob Wills Special/ Dev'lish Mary/ Goodbye Liza Jane/ Goodbye Liza Jane/ Home In San Antone/ I'll Be True To The One I Love/ I'm Talking 'Bout You/ Ida Red/ Ida Red/ Maiden's Prayer/ Miss Molly/ My Confession/ My Confession/ Oh Henry/ Perdido/ Right or Wrong/ Right or Wrong/ San Antonio Rose/ Silver Bell/ Silver Dew On The Bluegrass Tonight/ Stay A Little Longer/ Steel Guitar Rag/ Stumbling/ Sunbonnet Sue/ Take Me Back To Tulsa/ Thanks For Your Letter/ Time Changes Everything/ Too Late

 

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