Thursday, November 28, 2013

The Sistrunk Bros.

The Sistrunk Bros.

33787 —  Leave God's Children Alone
33788 — Talking Is Easy

Sistrunk Records
North, NC ?

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Herman McFadden on Cawthron

Herman McFadden
Chuck Tillman and Band

1833 - The Girl I Love
Herman McFadden, Lyco, BMI

1834 - Gal Crazy 
James Waugh, Lyco, BMI
Cawthron 505

4767 Maffitt Avenue, St. Louis, Mo.


Gal Crazy

The Billboard of June 29, 1959 has this record in a listing of new releases. The reviewer was not very enthusiastic. He gave two stars for "The Girl I Love": Feelingful rockabilly-styled delivery by McFadden on so-so tune with interesting backing". For the flip he had just one star left: "Routine rocker is sung in personable fashion." It cannot have helped that Billboard erroneously gave the label's name as "Cawthorne". 

Chuck Tillman led his own bands in St. Louis for a few years. Tillman played tenor sax on "Gal Crazy" (Cawthron 505-B) and flute on "The Girl I Love" (505-A).

The detailed activities of Dunlap J. Cawthron (the "J" is for James) and his companies remain somewhat unclear.   According to a letter from Los Angeles Gospel DJ John Phillips to Armin Büttner, the "Allegro Recording and Music Studio" was run by Cawthron in Los Angeles from 1955 to around 1965. However most (if not all) records on his first – eponymous - label, Cawthron, were issued around 1959 with a St. Louis address.   John Phillips told researcher Opal Louis Nations that Cawthron had a day job as traveling government meat inspector in the late fifties and early sixties. So could it be possible that Cawthron had bases in both towns?

 Source: THE CAWTHRON, C&C AND ALLEGRO LABELS, compiled by Armin Büttner and Opal Louis Nations

Friday, November 22, 2013

Little Herbert and The Arabians on Teek

Vocal by Little Herbert and The Arabians

CP-6497 - Bouncing Ball

Teek 4824-1/2


Cut by Bennie Smith, the dean of St. Louis electric guitarists, who taught many students through the years.  He also coached Benny Sharpe during an early incarnation of The Sharpees called The Turbans which included Stacy Johnson, Vernon Guy, Morris Henderson and Little Herbert.   

Little Herbert Reeves later sang lead on The Sharpees'  "Do The 45" (Knockout Records)


Saturday, November 16, 2013

Jim (Ruffuss) Belden / Bro. Ruffus π Pik'n & Cuzz'n √ Cleetuss

 Jim (Ruffuss) Belden
A Long Way To Go (Barnett)
 Prod. by E.J. Mohrman

Bro. Ruffus π Pik'n & Cuzz'n √ Cleetuss
Willie Go Round
Prod. by Pur Luck
on both sides :

A&R Al Viles (Cleetuss)
J.Belden A. Viles FLUNKYS 
Design Larry Daylight

Record Lable


Currently offered on ebay (link to auction). where "Willie Go Round" can be heard, which is in truth the Billy Preston song titled “Will It Go Round In Circles” (A&M Records, 1972).  

All info that I am able to collect indicates a Tulsa, Oklahoma production :

Al Viles (or Cousin Cletus)
Musician Alvia Viles, 34, of Tulsa, Okla., saved a couple from a burning truck in May 1982. He was honored in 1983 for heroism by the Carnegie Hero Fund Commission. The hero fund, founded by industrialist Andrew Carnegie after he witnessed a 1904 mine disaster that killed 178 men and boys, awarded medals and $2,500 each to 22 heroes and the families of four people who died in rescue attempt. [From a 1983 newspaper article]
Jim "Rufus" Belden

 is probably Jimmie Doyle Belden (1947-2009) who worked as a DJ in Tulsa (KOTV) and announcer/audioman/rasslin' MC.   He was also, quite probably, Jimmie Belden who recorded two songs penned by Emma Jo Mohrman, first issued on Empire Records in 1960 and also on Pla-Me Records in 1966. : " Darling Ann"  b/w "My Lovely Star ". That would make sense since the producer of the first side, "A Long Way To Go "  is  one E.J. Mohrman,  ( Emma Jo?). 
Mike Bruchas (Tulsa TV Memories website,) wrote some amusing lines about Belden :
Wrestling at KOTV was out of production when I went there in '76 but Buddy Allison said the wrestlers used to use the front bathrooms to change in and because there are no showers at KOTV, did splash baths from the sinks! Jimmy Belden - audioman and sometime announcer used to work as commentator talent on these, too. I remember seeing him in a formal light blue double knit suit - he said it was what he wore when co-anchoring wrasslin' coverage. Formal double knit!

Jimmy's claim to fame or infamy was to blow up his house one Winter while at 6. We ran all these stories on 6 about NOT crawling under your house to check for frozen pipes with a lighter or oven source of flame. Jimmy did - hit a gas pocket and blew up his house! Somehow he survived. Jimmy also played in some REAL honky tonk bands. He pestered me to shoot some band pictures while in performance - so 1 Saturday night I went to a VERY redneck club on 11th by Sheridan and started popping off pix with my flash as the band played. I was asked/no threatened to leave by folks in the audience afraid of them being captured on film WITHOUT their spouses AND by Jimmy's band. Gulp.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Jimmy and Mike Hall and the Venango Valley Boys


(Ira and Charles Louvin  Acuff-Rose BMI)
W. Warren -A. Carter  Commodore Music BMI
Process 136


On another pressing (second pressing?), name of the backing band is omitted.

A-side is the Louvin Brothers song released by Capitol Records in 1958  hear it on YT)
B-side is the Hank Thompson song from 1952 (also on Capitol)  hear it on YT

Audio files credit : ebay (turnblue auction, no taker?)

Monday, November 11, 2013

The Dissonaires / Mike Lawing and the Dissonaires

 The Dissonaires

CP-1916 —  Blitzkrieg
 Altair AK 101

Mike Lawing 
and the Dissonaires

CP-1917 —  One Love
Altair BK 101
Billboard review (Good Sales Potential) : June 29, 1959


It is believed that the band members were students at the Duke University. Durham, North Carolina. It is also believed that Karras is Harry G. Karras who later produced some Beach Music bands such as Bob Meyer and the Rivieras and The Swinging Medallions, with some help from Mike Lawing who wrote several songs with Karras.

Quite intriguing is the Karras' early sixties involvement in two West Coast labels owned by two brothers, Ben & Len Weisman : namely Talent Records and Skylark Records, apart for the two following releases :

In July 1960, both titles of the Altair single were re-issued on Talent #107 with different credits :
"Blitzkrieg", the instrumental side issued as by the Eden Rockers and "One Love", the vocal side  credited to Mike Lawing and The Blends / Music By The Eden Rockers.  Name of Ben E. Weisman is added to the songwriting credits and Bilya Bah Music, his publishing company, is added as well (the originals on Altair had no publisher).

In February 1961, "Blitzkrieg" is issued again (on Skylark #111). This time, the band is called The Penetrators.  On the flip : Mike Lawing and the Famous Keys "Chimpanzee Rocket Ride"  (H.Karras-L.Keith).     

Mike Lawing (no backing band credited) had a last single produced by Len Weisman in Summer of 1961 : "In L.A". / "Chimpanzee Ride" on Hawk Records.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Paul Durham

14525 ~ Mean Woman Married Man Blues
14526 ~ Nobody Loves Me

Both Paul Durham, McDowell Music BMI

McDowell Records #507
828 So. Lawrence St.
Montgomery, Ala.

15301 ~ The Way I Love You (sample)
15302 ~ She Lied

Both Paul Durham, Sandspur Music BMI

Sandspur Records
PO Box 192
Deatsville, Ala.
Division of Little Lou Records

Sandspur Records was Paul Durham's own label.

Perhaps he was this Paul Durham (but his voice sounds not quite like the voice of a 37-yr old man?) :
Paul Durham was born on July 07, 1928 and died on February 03, 2004 at the age of 75 and the social security number (SSN): 423-32-5454. Paul last resided in Deatsville, Alabama in Elmore County.
There was a Paul Durham, disc jockey at KOGT, Orange, Texas in 1955.  According to Billboard, Paul Durham " is planning to open a record shop in the near future. Durham writes, "I have been plugging record sales for other shops for years, so I figured I might as well make something out of it myself.  It also gives me a chance to pick up interesting tidbits on the new platters and on personalities from the distributors."

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Gary Hahn / The Vibrants on Delphia

Gary Hahn

20757 - Goodbye Girl
(Words & Music Gary Hahn)

The Vibrants
20858 - Something Else

Delphia 1
R.D. 1, Windsor, PA


Friday, November 1, 2013

Jack Rains and His Melo Tone's on REM

Jack Rains and His Melo Tone's

CP-4045 - Your Heart 
(Jack Rains, Fayette Pub. BMI
Vocal Roland Hyatt and The Blazers Guitar Kenny Whalen

CP-4046 - Don't Go Away *
(R. Hyatt - J. Rains, Fayette Pub. BMI)
Vocal Roland Hyatt and Albert Blakley, Guitar Kenny Whalen

* hear on YouTube

Rem 301


Note : this is the second use of #301 on the label (first is Tommy Baldwin) #302 not yet found. So...

Guitarist Kenny Whalen was born in Bourbon County and is a graduate of Bourbon County High School.  He began playing music in high school  and played with many bands after graduating from high school.  In 1967 Kenny recorded a song called " Stop the World" backed with an instrumental called "Wheels," (Buttila 925).   Another single on the same label was  "Green Back Dollar" / "Next Time I Fall In Love".   Some of Kenny's favorite guitar players are: Chet Atkins, Merle Travis and Les Paul, to name a few.   Kenny still plays today with The Travelers, a band he formed in 1967.

Bandleader Jack Rains (Jack O'Rains, Jack O'Neal Rains) was born in 1931. His brother was country singer and disc-jockey Mack Rains.   In Lexington, Kentucky, he operated  the Rains label  from 1961 to 1963 and, later, in Winchester, Kentucky  (Rains Recording Co., 1092 Flanagan Sta. Rd.), a few other labels such as Buttilla, Nashville Allstar, Needle-Mate and Reka.

Geraldine Altmyer on Gerry

Geraldine Altmyer

23715 - Lonely And Blue
23716 - You Gotta Have Love

Gerry 001

Route 2, Sewickley, PA


Beautician grandmother records her first song 

"My, but I'm lonely tonight. I need you only tonight," sang Gerry Altmyer as she was working one evening in her beauty shop, Mount Nebo Road, Ohio Township.  But she stopped suddenly and said to herself, "Where did I get that tune from? Hummmm." She went to her organ, sat down and finished the song that she hadn't realized she even started! - "It was after the Christmas season last February, and I was feeling down and bored that night.   So, I unconsciously started singing what I felt. "And that was that. 

Now, Mrs. Paul Altmyer has made a record, on her own label (Gerry records). On one side is her first song, "Lonely and Blue" "On the flip side is a song I wrote when I was inspired by a sermon in church one day. It was the second song I wrote and it's sort of a jazzy tune, 'You Gotta Have Love.' Mrs. Altmyer says she has always liked music. "I always wanted to cut a record, but, " she laughs, "I got to be a grandmother before it happened."

Mrs. Altmyer has been a beautician since she was 18 and has owned her shop on Mount Nebo Road for 20 years. After she had written-her songs, Mrs. Altmyer had a friend transpose them onto music paper.   She then obtained a copyright, had background music arranged and went to the recording studio Dec. 17 and cut the record. "I wasn't really nervous. It's just such a thrill to hear yourself on a record, singing songs you wrote yourself."

The record should be released by mid-January. Mrs. Altmyer has three children, Mrs. Lee (Janet) Sazton, 1010 Homer St., Perrysville; Mrs. John (Betty) Corson, of Colorado, and William Klug, of California.  She is the grandmother of three. Of her musical accomplishments she claims, "My husband is proud, but he doesn't say much."  Will the singing beautician make other records after this one?    As her song goes, "You gotta have faith in your heart if you wanna succeed. You gotta be proud. You gotta believe."   from North Hills News Record 24 December 1968

Ohio Township grandma still singing

Whatever happened to Ohio Township's singing beautician? Three years ago. Mrs. Paul (Gerry.) .Altmyer. a grandmother, started to write down what she sang...

Today she's still singing -- and accepting royalties. Mrs Altmver. who has lived on Mount Nebo Road more than 20 years, said. "I'm still writing lyrics for new songs.  Mv latest record. 'Little Old Church.' and 'Hangup Blues.' is on local " jukeboxes as well as other sections of "the state " Mrs Altmyer said she's sent records to disc jockies all over the United States, Australia, Canada and England.  Her first songs. "Lonely and Blue" and "You Gotta Have Love." are also on jukeboxes   She has formed her own company "Gerry Music " '

Her records have been played on an Ambridge station, WTAE. KDKA and WPIT. "You Gotta Have Love" was picked by Brite-Star Promotions as a pick hit in Billboard Magazine Mrs. Altmver also sings in area restaurants and at club meetings.   from North Hills News Record,  May 5, 1971

Gerry 002 (1971 )
Note the same 23715 number as Gerry 001 on left, 
but this is not a Rite pressing

Singer on Gerry's second issue is Jim Lea, who had recorded few song-poem records :

RCI 3003: Mystery In Hanoi  / Death Valley
Tropical 138: World Without Love / I Better Go
Tropical 156: Just Pass Me By / other side by Country Church Singers
Tropical 164: You Can Light Another Candle / other side by Charles Vickers
Tropical 170: The Doing Of Our Thing   / 5 O'Clock Friday
Mickey :  You Don't Known (What I'm Missing, Baby) / ?