Saturday, December 22, 2018
SHREVEPORT TWIST: OUR CITY'S SONGS (1897-1982)
SHREVEPORT TWIST: OUR CITY'S SONGS (1897-1982)
Compiled in December 2010, liner notes revised December 2018.
Songs about Shreveport, songs recorded in Shreveport, songs by Shreveporters, songs on Shreveport record labels.
Listen online: https://www.mixcloud.com/shreveportsongs/6-shreveport-twist-our-citys-songs-1897-1982/
1 SOUSA'S BAND Levee Revels: An Afro-American Can Hop (E. Berliner's Gramophone 38Z, circa 1897)
Composed by William Christopher O'Hare, the music director of Shreveport's Grand Opera House in the 1890s. It represents one of the earliest recordings connected to O'Hare and was performed by the band of the "March King," John Philip Sousa. Sheet music title substitutes “Cane Hop” for “Can Hop.”
2 EDDIE & OSCAR Nok-Em-All (Victor 23324, 1932)
Ed "Dizzy Head" Schaffer and Oscar "Buddy" Woods frequently played with Jimmie Davis on his blues recording of the 1930s. These guitarists also cut a few songs as a duo; here's one.
3 JIMMIE DAVIS Bed Bug Blues (Decca 5206, 1936)
During the 1944 Louisiana governor's race, JD's opponents decried his bawdy blues recordings, this one in particular. Still, he won. Guitar, yodeling, and backing vocals by his friend, Buddy Jones.
4 THREE FIFTEEN AND HIS SQUARES Drop My Stuff (Vocalion 03560, 1937)
Shreveport bandleader David Bluntson also recorded "Saturday Night on Texas Avenue." This song comes from the same recording session in Hot Springs, Arkansas.
5 BILL NETTLES AND HIS DIXIE BLUE BOYS Shake It And Take It (Vocalion 03634, 1937)
Prolific songwriter and musician BN was part of Shreveport's country music scene during the 1930s and 1940s. This song appeared on his first record.
6 CLAUDE LUTER ET SES LORIENTAIS Shreveport Blues (Swing 272, 1948)
Championing traditional jazz, Parisian CL served as a disciple and accompanist of New Orleans' Sidney Bechet. Here his group performs a song originally recorded by Clarence Williams' Blue Five that featured Bechet.
7 KITTY WELLS WITH JOHNNIE & JACK Love Or Hate (circa 1949)
Johnnie and Jack with the Tennessee Mountain Boys and Kitty Wells moved to Shreveport in 1948 to host daily broadcasts on KWKH and serve as one of the original groups performing on the Louisiana Hayride. This recording comes from one of their radio programs.
8 SHOT JACKSON AND HIS STRING BAND I'm Trading You In On A Later Model (Specialty 706, 1952)
Part of the KWKH/Louisiana Hayride scene, SJ played dobro and steel guitar for such musicians as the Bailes Brothers, Webb Pierce, Red Sovine, and Johnnie & Jack. Here's one of his earliest recordings issued under his own name and written by Johnnie and Jack. By the late 1950s, he had moved to Nashville and co-founded the ShoBud guitar manufacturing company.
9 MARGIE SINGLETON One Step (Nearer To You) (Starday 287, 1957)
From MS's first record, a song written by Dee Marais. MS married record producer and label owner Shelby Singleton and performed on the Louisiana Hayride.
10 TOMMY BLAKE AND THE RHYTHM REBELS Lordy Hoody (Sun 278, 1957)
One of Shreveport's premier rockabilly artists. Recorded by Sam Phillips at TB's first Sun Records recording session.
11 MULE THOMAS Blow My Baby Back Home (Hollywood 1091, 1958)
Jesse Thomas in disguise. Recorded shortly after he moved back to Shreveport after a 10+ year stint in California.
12 JERRY HAWKINS Swing Daddy Swing (Ebb 152, 1958)
Brother to Dale, JH performed on the Bossier Strip and cut a few 45s. This song features sisters Rose and Margaret Lewis on backing vocals plus Joe Osborn on guitar. Hawkins later served as president of the city's American Federation of Musicians, Local 116.
13 T-V SLIM AND HIS HEARTBREAKERS To Prove My Love (Speed 6865, 1958)
In 1945 Oscar Wills opened a radio repair shop on Caddo Street. Later, he expanded to tv repair and launched a recording career as TV Slim. This song, from his first record, shares the composer credit with record man Stan Lewis.
14 BUDDY WHITE AND THE KNIGHTS Teen Age Ball (Murco 1017, 1959)
A short-lived group formed in Shreveport by two ex-members of Gene Vincent and the Blue Caps. They released one 45.
15 THE LONESOME DRIFTER Eager Boy (K 5812, 1958)
Thomas Johnson (aka LD), hailed from the Bastrop/Monroe, La, area. He connected with Shreveport's Mira Smith, who operated the RAM Recording Studio, RAM Record Shop, and RAM record label. Smith released this on her other label, K.
16 JOHNNY MANN WITH THE GAYS Where Do We Go From Here (Shreve 1214, 1960)
The same JM that led the prolific 1960s Johnny Mann Singers? Probably not. The same Gays that recorded a session with Johnny Horton, then later changed their name to the Kimberlys and recorded with Waylon Jennings? Yes. A record label with a Shreveport address? Definitely!
17 TERRY LEE Shreveport Twist (PAMS, 1961)
Only one song could adequately complement the flip side of "Shreveport My Home Town." This is it.
18 LOUISIANA RED Ride On Red, Ride On (Roulette 4469, 1963)
Escaping the segregated South's injustices, the main character in this song travels to New York. His route includes a stop in Shreveport with a meal on the street.
19 RUFUS BROWN Evil Eyes (Brown's 100, circa 1965)
This record's label provides an address in the Cedar Grove neighborhood. It also indicates the producer is Marcus Brown, who recorded a 45 on another local label -- Peermont.
20 CURTIS GRIFFIN AND HIS BAND I Gotta Lump (Jewel 755, 1966)
Blues guitarist CG was born in nearby Poole, La, and moved to Los Angeles in the early 1950s. For this record, he partnered with two Shreveporters: songwriter Ferdinand "Fats" Washington and record label owner Stan Lewis.
21 THE MONKS La-Do-Da-Da (Magnolia 101, circa 1969)
A raucous Dale Hawkins cover recorded at Custom Sound Studio. Local lore suggests the garbled lyrics, which may contain an alcohol reference, resulted in the song being pulled from radio play. Vocalist Bill Wray later achieved fame as a songwriter and music producer.
22 THE RESIDENTS Cantaten To Der Dyin Prunen (1971)
Some of these enigmatic avant-garde noisemakers grew up in Shreveport. After relocating to San Francisco, their musical adventures blossomed. This song comes from one of their earliest demo recordings.
23 SHAY HOLIDAY Fight Fire With Fire (Soul Power 107, 1972)
Soul Power Records, primarily a vehicle for songwriters and producers Bobby Patterson and Jerry Strickland, issued releases recorded at Sound City Studios on Line Avenue. Here's a song from their first release.
24 ROSCOE ROBINSON We're Losing It Baby (Paula 378, 1973)
Another song written by Patterson and Strickland and recorded at Sound City. RR performed in gospel groups before turning to secular music in the 1960s. Based in Chicago, he hooked up with Stan Lewis long enough to release a few records in the early 1970s.
25 GOSPEL TRAVELERS Jesus Is Watching You (Hy Sign 107, circa 1975)
Industrious record label owner, record store operator, and music publisher Dee Marais released this 45. Monroe Johnson handles lead vocals.
26 TOBY COOPER & BRICK STREET The Guru (Judy 333, circa 1975)
One of TC's earliest musical endeavors involved performing in the house band for a weekly KTBS TV talent show in the mid-1950s. Since then, he's operated a night club and played with many regional bands. This song was recorded locally at Southern Star Studios.
27 B. L. BLADE By His Grace We've Come A Long Way (Part I and II) (B. L. B., 1982)
A self-released live recording by Rev. Brady Blade featuring his congregation, Zion Baptist Church. Included are both sides of the 45.