Tag Archives: Earl Scruggs

Grand Ole Opry Song

29 Mar

Most people probably know that Nashville is known as “Music City”, and those same people probably know that it is called that because of the country music industry. Nashville actually has been a hotbed of several musical genres. At one time, there was a strong R&B scene, and Jimi Hendrix honed his craft in the clubs on Jefferson Street. Bob Dylan spent a great deal of time in the city, and Elvis Presley recorded here all the time. Heck, the Black Keys and Jack White currently call Nashville home.

Despite a diverse history, country music was and continues to be the dominating form, and, these days, it is dominated by performers like Keith Urban, Carrie Underwood, Zac Brown. I can’t name them all because I don’t really like what they do. Today’s country seems like a Frankenstein’s monster to me. Take a little bit of country. Take a little bit of rock. Throw in a few more things. Once, you are finished a monstrosity has been created. Personally, I blame Garth Brooks.

Nashville didn’t become “Music City” because of today’s stars. It became “Music City” in the early part of the 20th Century because of a radio show, the Grand Ole Opry. It could be heard every Saturday night on WSM, a powerful AM station that took its signal throughout the United States. In the days before nationwide concert tours, artists could get their music to the masses over the radio. Since the performers gathered in Nashville to perform on the Opry, it made sense for record companies to set up studios nearby. As years passed, Nashville became the destination for those who wanted to get in the country music business.

Sometimes, I think that story gets lost in the glitz and glamor of the modern country music industry. In the old days, country artists didn’t have laser shows at their concerts. They definitely didn’t run around the stage and shake their asses. They stood behind the microphone and sang about heartbreak and trains.

Jimmy Martin was one of the old-time singers.

Jimmy Martin

Jimmy Martin

Known as the “King of Bluegrass”, he performed on the Opry many times. Unfortunately, he faced the demons of alcohol abuse, and uncertainty kept him from becoming a full member of the Opry. Despite that, he recorded “Grand Ole Opry Song“, an ode to the show and the people who made it special. I thought it would be interesting to use that song to introduce (or remind) the blogosphere to some of the people who turned Nashville into “Music City”.

Come and listen to my story if you will I’m gonna tell

About a gang of fellers from down at Nashville

First I’ll start with old Red Foley doin’ the ‘Chattanooga Shoe’

Red Foley

Red Foley

We can’t forget Hank Williams with them good old ‘Lovesick Blues’

Hank WIlliams

Hank Williams

It’s time for Roy Acuff to go to Memphis on his train

Roy Acuff

Roy Acuff

With Minnie Pearl and Rod Brasfield and Lazy Jim Day

Minnie Pearl

Minnie Pearl

Rod Brasfield

Rod Brasfield

Jim Day

Jim Day

Turn on all your radios I know that you will wait

Hear Little Jimmy Dickens sing ‘Take an Old Cold Tater and Wait’

Little Jimmy Dickens

Little Jimmy Dickens

There’ll be guitars and fiddles, Earl Scruggs and his banjo too

Earl Scruggs

Earl Scruggs

Bill Monroe singing out them ole ‘Kentucky Blues’

Bill Monroe

Bill Monroe

Ernest Tubb’s number, ‘Two Wrongs Won’t Make a Right’

Ernest Tubb

Ernest Tubb

At the Grand Ole Opry every Saturday night

There  was Uncle Dave Macon his gold tooth and plug hat

Uncle Dave Macon

Uncle Dave Macon

Cowboy Copas singing ‘Tragic Romance’

Cowboy Copas

Cowboy Copas

Signed sealed and delivered with Sam and Kirk McGee

Sam and Kirk McGee

Sam and Kirk McGee

And the master of ceremony was Mr. George D Hay

George D. Hay

George D. Hay

There was Lonzo and Oscar a-poppin’ bubble gum

Lonzo and Oscar

Lonzo and Oscar

George Morgan singin’ ‘Candy Kisses’ yum, yum

George Morgan

George Morgan

‘Got a Hole in My Bucket’ ‘Bringin’ in that Georgia Mail’

We’ll sing ‘The Sunny Side of the Mountain’

And dance to the ‘Chicken Reel’

You can talk about your singers in all kinds of way

But none could sing the old songs like Bradley Kincaid

Bradley Kincaid

Bradley Kincaid

With his old hound dog ‘Guitar’ and the famous ‘Blue Tail Fly’

Stringbean with Hank Snow and old fiddlin’ Chubby Wise

Stringbean

Stringbean

Hank Snow

Hank Snow

Chubby Wise

Chubby Wise

Now, that’s country.

My iPod Has Issues – The Name Game

16 Jul

It’s been a while since I delved into the psyche of my iPod. For those who don’t know, my iPod has no direction and is misunderstood by a lot of people. It is filled with music from different genres and time periods. It has been told that it contains nothing less than 20 years old. I’m not sure that is true, but it definitely has an old soul. Most people who listen to my iPod have a difficult time understanding how such a collection could have come together in the first place.

This blog is littered with posts about my iPod, and you can psychoanalyze it yourself here, here, and here. In these couch sessions, I simply hit shuffle and list the songs that pop up. Indeed, it is a wide variety, but I still can’t see why people say “can we please listen to something else?” when my iPod is trying to entertain them.

In this post, I am looking at my iPod from an altered perspective by focusing on one of its playlists. This one is called “What’s In a Name?” and contains selections that have the names of people in their titles. Clever, huh? So, a dosey-doe and here we go.

1. “All About Clovis Ledbetter” by Jerry Clower

2. “Rocky’s Reward” by Bill Conti

3. “Rhiannon” by Stevie Nicks

4. “Sheena is a Punk Rocker” by The Ramones

5. “Ziggy Stardust” by David Bowie

6. “William, It Was Really Nothing” by The Smiths

7. “Jack & Coke” by Lynda Kay

8. “Truck Turner” by Isaac Hayes

9. “Bennie and the Jets” by Elton John

10. “Sonny Got Caught in the Moonlight” by Robbie Robertson

11. “Jack & Diana” by John Mellencamp

12. “Willie, Waylon and Me” by David Allan Coe

13. “Marriage of Dale and Ming” by Queen

14. “Death of Floyd Collins” by John Prine and Mac Wiseman

15. “Jolene” by Dolly Parton

16. “Father Ramirez” by Ennio Morricone

17. “Ruby Tuesday” by The Rolling Stones

18. “The Legend of Bonnie and Clyde” by Merle Haggard

19. “Caroline No” by The Beach Boys

20. “The Ballad of Jed Clampett” by Lester Flatt, Earl Scruggs & The Foggy Mountain Boys

I really don’t think my iPod is all that strange.