Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Trouble In My Arms (MP3)

Johnny & Jonie Mosby  -  Trouble In My Arm

How 'bout a few minutes of ultra-catchy honky-tonk for your Tuesday night?

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Gin & Bourbon

Gin And Bourbon
My Babe

Here's both sides of a solidly rockin' mid-1960s effort from the Atlanta suburb of Marietta, Georgia.  The top side's a booze-oriented tribute to / rip-off of The Newbeats' big 1964 hit Bread And Butter and the flip's the Little Walter standard.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014


Monty Johnson  -  Flyin' Saucers In The Air

Monday, March 17, 2014

Hey, Buh-buh-buh-buh-buh-bay-bee

Rusty Draper  -  Tongue Tied Over You

Hey, remember when they used to make dopey records about speech impediments?  No? Pretty sure I don't either, but here's proof.  I have more.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Too Many Mini-Skirts

Jimmie James  -  Too Many Mini-Skirts

Too many mini-skirts?  Well, let's not get all carried away. Further study on the topic of country music and mini-skirts awaits you over on the main WFMU blog.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

I Can't Tell The Boys From The Girls (MP3)

The generation gap was a truly colossal chasm in 1969, as evidenced by this snippet of a Dear Abby column, which is guaranteed authentic!

Lester Flatt  -  I Can't Tell The Boys From The Girls

Sure Fire Kisses (MP3)

Justin Tubb  & Goldie Hill  -  Sure Fire Kisses 

Justin's 45-themed Nudie attire is likely the best stage wear any of us will ever see.  Surely, Ernest was beaming with pride.  Courtesy of Bear Family's superb Pepper Hot Baby, a collection of Tubb's honky-tonkin' 1950s sides.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Get Out Of The Car (MP3)

Sammy Davis Jr.  -  Get Out Of The Car

In 1956, Sammy Davis Jr. headed for Broadway to headline a musical production called Mr. Wonderful, written expressly for him and giving him the opportunity to transplant his talents from the nightclubs he usually played to what is sometimes called the "legitimate stage."  In any event, the other side of this 45 featured Without You, I'm Nothing, a song featured in the play.  We're not going to worry about that one.  Instead, here's Sammy Davis' take on Get Out Of The Car, The Treniers' irredeemably insensitive song made a bit less appalling here by adding an extra verse (invoking Sgt. Joe Friday!), in which it's made clear that the young lady in question won't have to walk back to town after all.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

I'm Gonna Hang My Britches Up (MP3)

Onie Wheeler  -  I'm Gonna Hang My Britches Up 

Onie takes on the women's liberation movement...and throws in the towel.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

If The Price Is Right (MP3)

Houston Roberts  -  If The Price Is Right 

Here's a foot-stompin' honky-tonker from Houston Roberts on Nashville's Little Darlin' label, an organization that  frequently peddled hard country sounds.  And speaking of prices, this seems like a fine time to gently remind you that WFMU's Rock & Soul Ichiban comes to you at all hours of the day and night completely free.  So if you feel like hitting the pledge button above to help us keep everything humming, we'd be grateful. 

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

The "IN" Sound for August 15th, 1966!!

Let's take a trip back to this very day forty-six years ago with Harry Harrison, when, on the recommendation of guest DJ Dave Brehm (RIP) of WGEZ in Beloit, WI, he plays us "Lost in My World," the latest single from the Outsiders, then has a chat with lead singer Sonny Geraci and lead guitarist Bill Bruno. Fair warning: no matter how convincing you find Harry's sales pitch, you definitely do not want to join the Army in late 1966! Trust me on this one.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Stan Kenton - Rock & Roller

Stan Kenton  -  Tequila

I have no idea how a progressive jazzbo like Kenton wound up waxing Tequila, but it all worked out pretty well.

Thursday, May 31, 2012

James Brown Month - Last Minute Entry


     I've been swamped with various nonsense this month, to the extent that I've been unable to participate in our celebration of James Brown. But I'm not going to let the month end without bringing you something...  but you may wish that I hadn't after hearing this rare gem!
     There's not a lot of information to be had about Ms. Farmer, but she lived with JB for a time in 1966-67 (one source suggests that she lived with him later, after he and his second wife Deirdre split up), and she only ever made one record, which debatably is one too many. This page on a seemingly-defunct message board has some anecdotes about her, and a batch of cool photos of James, from which I've stolen the photo below. Go check it out!

(L to R: "Jeannie" (last name unknown), Florence Farmer, JB, Terry Brown, Teddy Brown

Monday, April 9, 2012

I'm Not Crazy Yet (MP3)

Ray Price - I'm Not Crazy Yet

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Mack The Knife

Generally speaking, I'm a firm believer in staying far, far away from square dance records. There are, however, a few exceptions. Joe Maphis, for instance, released a few square dance instrumentals that are worth hearing for Maphis completists.

Another exception is this oddly captivating version of Mack The Knife, by The Squarenaders, which is almost certainly one of the greatest band names in all the world.

Squarenaders - Mack The Knife (3:47!)

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

"Peggy and the Snowman By the Sea"

     A clever enough gimmick song that probably went over pretty well live. Don't know if there are alternate verses, or whether he just used confederates in the audience to feed him the answers he was looking for (though the choices offered to the listener aren't really all that broad). 
     While unsuccessfully searching for an actual live recording, however, I found a fascinating discovery by one "." Listen and have your mind blown, man:

     Pretty trippy, huh?  Also, if you look at the cover of Words and Music By Roger Miller upside down in a mirror while striking yourself on the head repeatedly with a seasoned cast-iron skillet, you'll see the phrase "Paul is Dead, and I don't feel so good, either." Go ahead... try it!  Let me know how that works out for you.

POSTSCRIPT: I still couldn't find a real, live performance "in the wild," but I did find him performing it on The Dino Crocetti Show:

There's no significant deviation from the record here, but it's still worth a look.

Monday, March 12, 2012

It's A Gas!

Alfred E. Neuman - It's A Gas (2:03)

Ruby Wright - "Dern Ya"

    As you may recall, the headmistress of this institution posted Jody Miller's "Queen of the House" a couple of days ago. Ms. Miller is okay, I guess, but she's never been a personal favorite (I prefer Mrs. Miller). And while "female vocalists performing Roger Miller-themed answer records" is not a crowded field, I'm afraid that, to my ears, the best she can hope for is second place.
    I assert that the clear winner in this race would be none other than Ruby Wright, whose destiny would seem to have been predestined, given that she sprang from the loins of Kitty Wells, the singer of perhaps the greatest answer record of all, "It Wasn't God Who Made Honky-Tonk Angels." And of course, her father was none other than Johnnie Wright, of Johnnie and Jack fame (as well as a distinguished solo career). 
     While she had earlier recorded as part of the trio Nita, Rita, & Ruby ("Nita" being Anita Carter and "Rita" being Ruby Winters, sister of Don Winters), and would perform with her parents on stage and on their TV show through the years, Ruby only had one big hit, as featured above. It was written by another scion of Nashville royalty , Justin Tubb (who was an ex-roommate of Roger Miller's!), and was also recorded without chart success by faded '50s pop singer Teresa Brewer.

     While assembling material for my various Miller-related posts for the month, I was going through one of my myriad souvenir booklets of country star photos and discovered a forgotten one with a bunch of autographs on the back page, presumably acquired at an appearance by the Kitty Wells/Johnnie Wright Family Show. They include Ruby, her parents, her brother Bobby Wright, fellow member of their show Bill Phillips, fiddler and Jimmy Martin sideman Vernon Derrick, bass fiddle player Bill Yates (I think this is the right guy) and Chris Warner (this is my least certain I.D., but all of these last three seem to have played with Jimmy Martin , so I imagine he must have been on the bill with them backing him).

Ruby with Bill Phillips

And more, backing up her daddy in a number from SECOND FIDDLE TO A STEEL GUITAR
(Available on DVD from Time/Life!)

     Outside of Bobby's string of hits in the '70s, the family ceased to be a force in the recording industry, but remained popular as a stage act until Kitty and Johnny's retirement in 2000.  Sadly, Ruby never lived to inherit the mantle of "Queen of Country Music," dying in September 2009. Her father followed in 2011, leaving Kitty a widow after nearly 74 years of marriage. Their grandson still maintains their recording studio in Madison, TN.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Goin' Out To Hollywood (MP3)

Bill Emerson - Goin' Out To Hollywood

So here's a mighty fine record by Bill Emerson, who lays out the inspired tale of a backwoods country boy with a plan to head west to Hollywood, stoked up on visions of movie stardom, limousines, and flashy Fender guitars.

Is it country, rock & roll, or maybe rockabilly? All of the above, I guess, but to tell you the truth I think it's mostly in the ear of the beholder.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Marijuana Grave (MP3)

Sam & Annie Taylor - Marijuana Grave

Here's some first-rate anti-drug propaganda warning of the perils of marijuana use.