Uncle Henry S
August 21, 2010 by staff
Uncle Henry S, I suppose if you were to poll listeners most current country music as to who was Uncle Dave Macon, about 95% of them have no idea, and probably not even know the name at all. However, in the early days of country music, the 1920s? S, was one of the most interesting artists of the genre, whether on stage, radio, or registration. Born in 1870, did not become a professional musician until the early 20s? S, after being forced to close its delivery business, a business that relied on mules and carts, who was expelled by cars and trucks. It was one of the first major star of the Grand Ole Opry, and appear regularly in 1920? S until shortly before his death in 1951.
album today is a historical collection released in 1979 by Rounder Records. Although it contains none of his best sellers, which contains some interesting original music, and various live performances. The album is called “Laugh Your Blues Away.” My first recording Uncle Dave Macon, after buying this, probably from the Ernest Tubb Record Shop, in early 1980? S.
The album begins with a 1930 recording titled “Go On Nora Lee.” One of the best recordings I’ve heard of Uncle Dave banjo skills, skills that are often underestimated.
In addition, recorded in 1930, is the next track, “Mysteries of the world.” According to the notes to the album, both of these cuts have not been published previously. Furthermore, in both courts, Uncle Dave accompanied by Sam McGee, another great early country music. I like this track, has the largest working banjo, along with a stellar vocal work by Uncle Dave.
“Come on Buddie, Do not You Want To Go” another of the same sessions, is another topic that really illustrates Uncle Dave playing banjo. A completely different style later made famous by Earl Scruggs, quite a switch, however. He really is the tool in this track. Then, in “Oh baby I love” plays in a completely different style and makes it almost to perfection. This is one of the best tracks on the album. Another vocal.
Next is a track recorded in 1945, Uncle Dave, “Come Dearest the Daylight is dawning / Nobody ‘s Darling But Mine”. The banjo is almost secondary in this recording, and voice are simply not there, as they were in previous recordings. Actually, it sounds as if you were trying to do some kind of accent.
One the other hand, the voices are very similar to those of old Uncle Dave in “Do not You search for” Trouble, as is the banjo playing, except at the end when it sounds like the banjo gets extremely out of tune. According to the notes of the album, these two themes, along with the final two and two tracks of side B, were the last actual recordings Uncle Dave would, and was accompanied by his son, Dorris.
Among the best works of these works, 1945, would be “I’m Free, I have broken the chains.” Good voice work for a later, the voice of 74 years.
final cut on one side, “Laugh Your Blues Away”, also finds the voice in good shape, too. These 1945 recordings were not her best work, although a couple are pretty good. It is likely, however, had been released at that time, the guesses that were not big sellers, as even in 1945 standards, the style of Uncle Dave sounded a bit outdated, not having changed in twenty years. Remember, the 1945 country music was seeing the first successes of a young Eddy Arnold, while Ernest Tubb, Red Foley, and Dexter aluminum were three of the best acts, and within a couple of years, names like Hank Williams and Hank Thompson be seen in the best-seller lists. Country was changing.
Side two opens with “Take Me Back To My Old Carolina Home”, a recording of the 1940 film, “The Grand Ole Opry.” The introduction is long head Opry (and creator of the Opry) George D. Hay. Despite the sound quality less-than-stellar track performance, it is as good as any other disk.
“Travellin ‘On My Mind” is another session in 1945. Uncle Dave does some yodeling acceptable on this track that has a sound highly reminiscent of much of the work Jimmie Rodgers, in fact, the last stanza is lifted verbatim from the classic Rodgers T For Texas “(I can only women than a passenger train can carry).
A final cut of the sessions of 1945, and probably the best of the bunch, “I’m drifting away from you.” Once again, a voice of 74 years, the performance is quite good, another highlight of the album.
“Over The Mountain” dates from a 1946 issue of the Grand Ole Opry, and includes an introduction by Roy Acuff. Uncle Dave playing banjo is just a small part of this track, as their Dorris’ guitar is the instrument of the moment, along with, of course, the voice of Uncle Dave, who are very good at this track. One can only imagine a summer night, the radio, hearing this performance through the air. It must have been quite an experience.
The notes are not very clear, but I suppose that “the death of John Henry” can be another live performance, perhaps because of the Opry. Dorris is replaced in this track, for the collection of McGee Brothers. Some search engines hot, here, by McGee.
Next up, a song that was a favorite of Uncle Dave, “Eleven Cent Cotton”. According to the notes of the album, this is the only recording of Uncle Dave singing this song. Despite the dated sound, the lyrics are strangely appropriate, even today. Ask any farmer. Also worth noting, Uncle Dave breaks in a plug for one of his old Opry sponsors, American Ace Café.
“Chicle” is another recording of a broadcast of the Grand Ole Opry, November 1950, during the special 25th Anniversary show. This is a good example of the ability Uncle Dave with novelty songs, which were a big part of his repertoire. I’m not sure the speaker set Uncle Dave is perhaps George D. There? In the end, however, as the track fades, you can hear Red Foley.
An even larger share of the catalog Uncle Dave, were songs of inspiration, of which two complete this album. Both are live recordings from 1946, I guess maybe because of the Opry, but I can not say for sure, and the notes of the album is not specified. “From Jerusalem to Jericho” is a great song, in itself, and “How beautiful heaven must be” also rates highly. Uncle Dave performance on both tracks, again, very good. Given his style of yesteryear the limitations of that technology was the recording, both of these issues are true artistic beauty.
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