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Author Topic: Alabama String Bands ('24-'37)  (Read 1243 times)

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Offline MotMot

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  • Some said it's beans, some said it's greens
Alabama String Bands ('24-'37)
« on: December 03, 2004, 07:30:29 AM »
I see that Document has a new (to me, at least) CD called Alabama String Bands, which I like the looks of.? I've pasted in the notes and track list below (and apologize for the length).? Some of it is familiar to me, but a lot of it is not.? I was wondering if any Weenies were more familiar, and willing to share impressions.?

Here's Document's description (from the website):
The first artist featured here is Dr.D.Dix Hollis (1861-1927) was born into a family of West Alabama planters with large slave holdings. At the age of 10 Hollis learned to fiddle from a family servant and from older fiddlers around Sulligent, Alabama. While studying medicine in Baltimore for 5 months in 1884, he also took lessons from a classical violinist. In 1924 he travelled to New York and recorded 12 tunes for Paramount. Four of these tunes were and four others were preserved as test pressings by the Hollis family over the years. These are some of the earliest fiddle recordings made and capture the playing of a 63-year old man whose style is firmly rooted in the 19th century.
Y.Z. Hamilton (1888-1936) was highly esteemed by local fiddlers, his "Fifty Years Ago" and "Hamilton's Special Breakdown", recorded in 1926, were standards in the repertoires of Birmingham fiddlers for decades. Despite 3 fingers missing on his right hand, Hamilton was also an excellent ragtime piano player.
Olen Mayes (b.1901) of the Short Creek Trio was born and raised on Sand Mountain, an area known for fiddlers and string bands. In their first recording session they concentrated on vocal numbers led by Reuben "Red" Burns and in the second laid down fiery hoedown tunes fiddled by Cliff Click.
The next artist featured on these recordings is E.E. Akins. He had played on radio and made public appearances in bands such as the "Plow Pushers" and "Silas Akins' Radio Favourites." In 1928 Akins recorded 2 tracks with banjoist Johnny Motlow and guitarist Red Phillips in Atlanta.
Dixie Ramblers, the last band on this recording, hailed from the northwestern Alabama town of Russellville. The four-piece band recorded in Birmingham in 1937. Their vocal numbers were rejected by the recording company, but their swingy original fiddle tunes made the cut.

01 :: dr. d.d. hollis turkey in de straw
02 :: walking in the parlor
03 :: none greater than lincoln
04 :: lone indian
05 :: dixie and yankee doodle
06 :: the girl slipped down
07 :: glory on the big string?
08 :: whistlebe
09 :: wyzee hamilton fifty years ago
10 :: hamilton`s special breakdown?
11 :: old sefus brown
12 :: because he was only a tramp
13 :: grandfather`s liver (ain`t what it used to wus) (with luther patrick, vcl)
14 :: cornbread (with luther patrick, vcl)
15 :: short creektrio hand me down my walking cane
16 :: the burglar man (with ruben burns)
17 :: nobody`s business (with ruben burns)
18 :: the buckin` mule (with cliff click)?
19 :: huntin` me a home (with ruben burns)
20 :: the old hen cackled and the rooster crowed
21 :: akins birmingham boys i walked and walked
22 :: there ain`t no flies on auntie
23 :: dixie ramblers franklin county blues?
24 :: ridin` in an old model t
... but it's a slow consumption, killing me by degrees


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