Various - Country & Western Hit Parade: 1961 - Dim Lights, Thick Smoke And Hillbilly Music
'Dim Lights, Thick Smoke And Hillbilly Music 1961'
Country & Western Hit Parade 1961
It was the year that the first inductions were made into the as-yet unbuilt Country Music Hall of Fame. The Hall of Fame was an extension of the Country Music Association, founded in 1958 as a rearguard action against rock 'n' roll. Two of rock 'n' roll's staunchest opponents, Acuff-Rose's Wesley Rose and Starday's Don Pierce, were among the founders. The initial inductees into the Association's Hall of Fame were Wesley's father, Fred, together with Fred's protégé, Hank Williams, alongside the almost forgotten Jimmie Rodgers. The plaques were unveiled at the Grand Ole Opry on November 3, 1961 and were placed on display at the Tennessee State Museum until the Country Music Hall of Fame was completed in 1967.
In January 1961, Shelby Singleton arrived in Nashville from Shreveport, Louisiana, and opened a Mercury Records office in the Cumberland Lodge Building on Seventh Avenue North. With his arrival, Mercury became a serious player in country music for the first time in its fifteen-year history. Within nine months, Singleton came up with Leroy Van Dyke's Walk On By, George Jones' Tender Years, Joe Dowell's Wooden Heart, and Ray Stevens' Ahab The Arab. The latter two were pop hits recorded in Nashville. Singleton's flamboyancy was just what Mercury needed to establish a presence in a city dominated by the three major players, RCA, Columbia, and Decca. In March 1961, Singleton brought Jerry Kennedy up from Shreveport.
Kennedy had started recording as a solo artist for RCA when he was eleven, and had been a staff musician on the Louisiana Hayride in his teens. "I had known Shelby, and I'd go to his house and help him stuff records in envelopes," he says. "Then one day he asked me to help him run a record shop, and we opened the Bayou Record Store in Shreveport. After that it all happened so quickly. Shelby went to Dallas and cut a cover version of 'Please Help Me, I'm Falling' with Rusty Draper, and then it was, 'Hey, I'm going to Nashville to take over A&R.' I wasn't that keen on moving up, but I came on March 1st to play sessions. I was only making one or two sessions a week, and I was ready to go home by the end of the month, but Shelby got me on the payroll as his assistant."
Kennedy essentially replaced another guitarist, Hank Garland, who became incapacitated after a traffic accident. The most supremely adaptable of Nashville's A-team guitarists, Garland had stepped from the shadows to release his first jazz album in February 1961 (an album that was also the first jazz album produced by Columbia's Don Law after thirty years of A&R work). The following month, Garland was in Hawaii with Elvis Presley before returning to the studios. But then, on the morning of September 8, 1961, he quarreled with his wife, who took their two children to a Nashville motel. Arriving home, Garland found them gone and assumed she'd gone back to her family in Milwaukee. He set out for Milwaukee at top speed intending to catch her, but, around 5:00pm, his vehicle overturned near Springfield, Tennessee.
Garland was thrown from the vehicle and spent weeks in a coma. The story goes that after he came out of the coma, fellow A-teamer Grady Martin brought him a guitar, but left Vanderbilt Hospital in tears because Garland couldn't maintain his coordination. As his money ran out, his friends signed his name on Musicians' Union cards to give him some income. Of course, the record companies owed Garland that … and much more. He'd played on countless sessions, turning in wonderfully succinct and lyrical solos for artists as diverse as Red Foley, Don Gibson, Elvis Presley, the Everly Brothers, Conway Twitty, and Eddy Arnold. Garland never resumed an active role in music, and lingered in a twilight world until his death in 2004. That same year, a movie about his life, 'Crazy,' appeared in limited release, implying that his accident was no accident. Those in the know weren't buying it.
Nineteen-sixty-one was also a year dominated by country music's new breed of songwriters: Willie Nelson, Roger Miller, Hank Cochran, Bill Anderson, and…above all…Harlan Howard. Together, they created one of the most memorable years in country music history. Few years yielded so many songs still in rotation.
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|Various - Country & Western Hit Parade - 1961 - Dim Lights, Thick Smoke And Hillbilly Music CD 1|
|01||Don't Worry||Robbins, Marty|| |
|02||Sea Of Heartbreak||Gibson, Don|| |
|03||I Fall To Pieces||Cline, Patsy|| |
|04||Funny (How Time Slips Away)||Walker , Billy|| |
|05||I'll Just Have A Cup Of Coffee (Then I'll Go)||Gray, Claude|| |
|06||Hello Walls||Young, Faron|| |
|07||Po' Folks||Anderson , Bill|| |
|08||Tennessee Flat Top Box||Cash, Johnny|| |
|09||Right Or Wrong||Jackson , Wanda|| |
|10||Foolin' Around||Owens, Buck|| |
|11||Louisiana Man||Kershaw, Rusty & Doug|| |
|12||Your Old Love Letters||Wagoner, Porter|| |
|13||Losing Your Love||Reeves, Jim|| |
|14||You're The Reason||Edwards, Bobby|| |
|15||Big Bad John||Dean, Jimmy|| |
|16||Big River, Big Man||King, Claude|| |
|17||When Two Worlds Collide||Miller, Roger|| |
|18||Walk On By||Van Dyke, Leroy|| |
|19||Tender Years||Jones, George|| |
|20||Ragged But Right||Mullican, Moon|| |
|21||Under The Influence Of Love||Owens, Buck|| |
|22||It's Your World||Robbins, Marty|| |
|23||Sweet Lips||Pierce, Webb|| |
|24||Crazy||Cline, Patsy|| |
|25||Heart Over Mind||Price, Ray|| |
|26||Diggy Liggy Lo||Kershaw, Rusty & Doug|| |
|27||Big, Big Love||Stewart, Wynn|| |
|28||Heartbreak USA||Wells, Kitty|| |
|29||My Ears Should Burn (When Fools Are Talked Ab||Gray, Claude|| |
|30||I Dreamed Of A Hill-Billy Heaven||Ritter, Tex|| |
|31||Each Time I Hear (Don't Worry)||Lambert, Gloria|| |
Dim Lights, Thick Smoke And Hillbilly Music
Country & Western Hit Parade
“Collecting an anarchic mix of sex and sentimentality, earnest paeans to family and fanciful tales of drinking and cheating, DIM LIGHTS… affords a fascinating glimpse into black-and-white ‘50s polemics… Established stars, inspired wannabes proffer an intoxicating brew of dancefloor honky tonk, hillbilly boogie, bluegrass, western swing, incipient rockabilly, goofball novelty, and sentimental country-pop.” (UNCUT magazine)
The reviews are in and everyone from Australia to Los Angeles to London is raving about Bear Family’s definitive year-by-year country series. Starting in 1945, DIM LIGHTS, THICK SMOKE, AND HILLBILLY MUSIC (COUNTRY & WESTERN HIT PARADE) tells the real story of country music record-by-record. The hits are here, but so are groundbreaking records that went nowhere at the time. This is the true and uncensored history of country music. Everything you need to hear, year-by-year. Stars like Hank Williams, Bob Wills, Eddy Arnold, Ray Price, and Hank Snow are here, but so are beerhall legends like Eddie Noack and Sonny Burns, and roots music mavens like Charlie Feathers and the Stanley Brothers, as well as overlooked giants like Carl Belew and Floyd Tillman. You’ll also hear the incredible original versions of songs like Duelin’ Banjos, Release Me, Lonely Street, and many more! Every CD is full to the brim with great music, and they’re all individually packaged in hardcover 72-page books by Colin Escott that tell the story of every song as well as the broader music history of the time. Fabulous photos, original record labels, and period advertisements round out the packages.
Bear Family began its journey into year-by-year anthologies with its groundbreaking and award-winning BLOWIN’ THE FUSE/SWEET SOUL MUSIC series that tells the story of R&B from 1945-1970. Look for the series to continue into the Funk era. And look for a year-by-year Rock ‘n’ Roll anthology coming soon.
# After the volumes covering 1945-1955 were released, the word was out. This series is definitive, fabulously packaged, and faultlessly remastered! Everything you'd expect from Bear Family…and more!
# Jack Clement, who produced Johnny Cash, Roy Orbison, Waylon Jennings, Don Williams, and many others, said, "This is the best country series of all time. No doubt. No question." Robert Hilburn in the 'Los Angeles Times'said, "An invaluable album project…enables fans to step back in time and listen to the radio just like Elvis Presley, Ray Charles, and Bob Dylan did."
# Now the story continues from 1956 until 1960. Every CD is generously full. Every booklet is extensive and chocked full of rare photos and illustrations, as well as complete stories behind the songs!
# In addition to the hits, the series contains rarities that went on to influence country music…and all music…in the years ahead, like Wanda Jackson's original version of Silver Threads And Golden Needles, Carl Belew's original Lonely Street, and Chet Atkins' influential Walk, Don't Run.
# This series is designed to introduce new listeners to the very best that country music has to offer… while keeping longtime fans entertained. Every volume is a fabulous time capsule.
Here's the story
For many years, we'd received requests to do a truly definitive country series, but it wasn't until the success of our year-by-year R&B/Soul series, 'Blowin' The Fuse' (now 'Sweet Soul Music' and soon to be continued into the Funk era) that we decided we needed to do something comparable for country music. The first volumes of 'Dim Lights, Thick Smoke And Hillbilly Music' took us from 1945-1955, and now the story continues into the era of the Nashville Sound.
The series has been compiled with today's fans in mind. Sure, the big hits are there, but so are the classic performances that weren't necessarily hits at the time, but became influential in the years ahead. Every volume has incredibly detailed behind-the-scenes stories, fabulously rare photos, and an ongoing history of country music set against the backdrop of the broader American music business. The booklets alone are 72 pages! Definitive? You bet!
Superlatives are often overused, but we feel that this series is part of our mission to bring this incredible music to new fans ... as well as entertaining older fans. We pick up the story in 1956....just as country music was coming to terms with the upset of rock 'n' roll!
And, keeping in the spirit of the releases, some of the artists' listings are as they originally appeared - like Jim Edward and Maxine Brown and Bonnie, Wayne Raney - Raney Family (Wayne, Wanda and Zyndall) and Marty Robbins with Ray Conniff - while the cd in each set is stored in a reproduction of a 45 rpm record label bag appropriate to that year.
Country music author and historian Colin Escott is responsible for these remarkable releases, an obvious labour of love that has taken considerable research effort, offering a valuable insight into the development of country music over the years. Many of country music's foremost entertainers are included alongside others who may have only earned a place in the footnotes of country music history, but all present a variety of voices and differing musical styles that have virtually disappeared, over half a century later, in contemporary country music's conveyor belt output. The songs were also different back then: sometimes relating to current events, they also regularly centred upon themes like boozin', honky-tonking and slippin' around, now generally considered non-pc in these over sensitive times.
Country & Western Hitparade - CD-Album-Series by Bear Family
Read more at: https://www.bear-family.com/bear-family/country-series/country-und-western-hitparade/
Copyright © Bear Family Records
Superbly packaged and annotated, the DIM Light series brilliantly documents one of the great streams of 20th-century American mus. Essential for collectors, highly recommended to all!..
Blues & Rhythm 2/12 Max Decharne
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Ready to ship today, delivery time** appr. 1-3 workdays