It’s Father’s Day today here in the UK, and so I thought I’d post a Dad-related Country song this morning.
Turns out that all the ones I could think of are sings about Dads who are either absent, alcoholic, dead, or all three.
Since my Dad is none of these things (at least, he wasn’t last time I checked), I thought instead I’d post a song by a Country act I know because of my Dad, which given that 99.9% of the songs I post in this series have come to my attention the same way, doesn’t exactly make today’s post anything out of the ordinary.
The Statler Brothers are not all brothers (two of them were) and none of them were called Statler. They had originally performed under the name The Kingsmen but when another band with the same name had a hit in 1963 with Louie Louie they decided they needed to change their name. They settled on Statler after seeing the name on a pack of tissues in a hotel room.
Apart from the other times I’ve posted songs by them, you may recognise them as Johnny Cash’s backing vocalists, which they started doing in 1964 and carried on until the early 1970s. You can hear them on his At San Quentin album, for example, and they get a name check on Closing Medley from that record.
Anyway, here’s a tune by them:
The Statler Brothers – Do You Remember These?
And to make this a little more Father’s Day friendly: in 2007, Grandstaff – who were Wil and Langdon Reid, the sons of actual Statler Brothers Don and Harold – recorded this as a tribute:
Grandstaff – The Statler Brothers Song
It was Nancy Sinatra’s 78th birthday on Friday, which makes this morning’s choice a remarkably simple one.
There’ve been many different versions of this over the years, but if I had to pick a favourite, it’d be Nancy & Lee’s version I’d have to plump for.
Yes, even above Johnny & June’s.
Nancy Sinatra & Lee Hazlewood – Jackson
I’ve mentioned Charley Pride before, of course.
Ex-Army, ex-professional baseball pitcher, the military and sporting world’s loss was very much country music’s gain.
This is from an album my Dad had a copy of when I was a kid, and which I recently got hold of a copy of for myself. By which I mean, there’ll be more from this another time.
Charley Pride – Able Bodied Man
This morning, another tune from that album by The Carter Family I posted about just after Christmas.
I could write more, but you really don’t need me to tell you how immense and influential they were, do you?
Here’s the title track from the record in question:
The Carter Family – Travellin’ Minstrel Band
This morning, my head hurts from last night.
So you’ll forgive me if this is brief, and a little later than usual.
Here’s a song I’ve been meaning to post for absolutely ages:
Tom T. Hall – Old Dogs, Children and Watermelon Wine
Regular visitors to this series will have noticed that when I can’t think of anything to post, I have three reliable default Country singers to whom I turn: Johnny Cash, Kris Kristofferson and George Jones.
Here’s George Jones:
George Jones – The King Is Gone (So Are You)
If I were to list the honours bestowed on this morning’s Country act, I imagine that (like me) few of you will know who I mean.
He is an inductee into the International Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame, and the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, and a recipient of a National Heritage Fellowship, the United States’ highest honour in the folk and traditional arts.
But if we did it the other way round and said: “Who is Mac Wiseman?” then I suspect most will shrug their shoulders (not you, George, put your hand down).
This is Mac Wiseman, still recording at the grand old age of 92 (or ’92 years of age’, as football commentators seem compelled to say when describing someone’s age, like that makes them sound more articulate than saying ’92 years old’):
Mac Wiseman – Somewhere Bound