The little old log cabin in the lane – Fiddlin’ John Carson.
1923.  (The first catalogued ‘Country/Hillbilly’ record) .
Fiddlin, John Carson. - 1868-1949. Fannin County, Georgia.
John Carson, was a champion "Old time fiddler" who learned to play "Country style" on a fiddle that had belonged to his Irish grandfather. Carson broadcast on radio from 1922 & made the first commercial hillbilly recordings in June 1923 with "The little old log cabin in the lane" & " That old hen cackled & the roosters going to crow".

It ain,t gonna rain no’ mo’, - Wendell Hall. 1923. Howdy! 
Wendell Woods Hall. Kansas, 1896 - 1969.
Writer, vaudeville xylophonist, guitarist, ukele-player & crooner, Woods was a prolific composer in the country style & a pioneer broadcaster who, as the "Red Headed Music maker" toured the world with his "It ain,t gonna rain no mo,", a song which, first recorded in 1923, soon sold a million.

Wreck of the old ‘97 - Vernon Dalhart. 1924. American Roots.  
Vernon Dalhart. - Jefferson,Texas.1883-1948. Not so much a sell out as a sell in!
Born, Marion Try Slaughter. Was a cowboy in north Texas, driving cattle between the towns of Vernon & Dalhart until 1902, whilst also attending Dallas conservatory of music.  Moved to N.Y.C. in about 1910, where he studied opera. Made first record ("Can,t you hear me callin, Caroline")  in 1916, which was justifiably unnsuccesful. Had limited success as both a pop & opera singer. In the early 1920,s Hillbilly music was starting to sell, so he went back to his roots & got involved, recording his first hillbilly song, "Wreck of the old ,97" in 1924 (b.w. "The prisoners song" which he re-recorded under numerous other names, numerous times. In fact it has been said that he used as many as 110 other names!). "Wreck..... " became the first million selling "Country" song. ("Wreck" was recorded by its composer , the Virginia born guitarist, fiddler, pianist & harmonica player Henry Whitter, the previous year but Dalhart "stole" it & bled all of its success for himself). By the early 30,s his career was on the wane, due mainly to Jimmie Rodgers truer form of hillbilly music. He recorded the childrens favourite "The runaway train" in 1931. He was also closely associated with another C & W arch-populariser, Carson Jay Robison. (see seperate entry). He eventually moved to Bridgeport, Connecticut, where he gave singing lessons & worked as a night clerk in a hotel

Wreck of the old ‘97 - Johnny Cash. 1956. Best of the Sun Years.
Johnny Cash. Kingsland,Arkansas.1932- 2003

White house blues – Charlie Poole &  the North Carolina Ramblers. 1926.(early topical song)
Charlie Poole. - Charles Cleveland Poole, Randolph county,  North Carolina. 22.3.1892 - 1931. Charlie Poole & the North Carolina Ramblers were one of the most popular string bands of the 1920s. Poole strongly influenced later banjo players, including those who would become the creators of bluegrass. He spent much of his adult life working in textile mills. He learned banjo as a youth and also played baseball. (He may have adopted his three-finger playing style, a version of classical banjo technique, due to a baseball accident involving his thumb.) When not working in mills, he would travel from town to town across the country, playing the banjo and taking what work he could get. He ended up settling in Spray, NC, in 1918 and married two years later. He and his brother-in-law, fiddler Posey Rorer, would often play together with other local musicians, and out of these performances grew a distinct group called the North Carolina Ramblers. Poole and Rorer teamed up with guitarist Norm Woodlieff in 1925, and the trio auditioned in New York for Columbia Records. They were accepted and cut four songs; all were successful, including the bluesy "Don't Let Your Deal Go Down." That became a bluegrass and country standard, and Poole and the Ramblers were soon a popular string band.
The songs they sang were a mixture of minstrel songs, Victorian ballads, and humorous burlesques often delivered with Poole's straight-faced, dry wit. Several more songs' paths to popularity in the country tradition led through Poole's band, including "Sweet Sunny South" and "White House Blues." "If the River Was Whiskey," weaves that Irish tale of drunkenness with the then-up-to-the-minute "Hesitation Blues" (also known as "Sittin' on Top of the World"). Through the rest of the 1920s, the Ramblers recorded close to 70 sides for Columbia.
                        Like many country performers to follow, Poole lived a fast life; he was a hard-drinking man, rowdy and reckless. He was significant as one of the first country artists to gain widespread popularity through recordings, and when the Depression slowed record sales dramatically, he was hard hit. Around 1930 his self-confidence began to wane with his popularity, and he began drinking even more heavily. Scheduled to appear in a film in 1931, he unfortunately went on a bender and died of heart failure before he could get to Hollywood. After his death, Rorer (who had left the band in 1929) and guitarist Roy Harvey (who'd replaced Woodlieff around the same time) began leading the North Carolina Ramblers. (The group continued to record and perform for a quite a few years afterward.) Poole's music enjoyed renewed popularity during the folk revival of the '60s, and several reissue LPs followed. His complete recordings were issued on CD by the County label in the 1990s, and Kinney Rorrer wrote and published a biography of the great bandleader and banjo player.

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