Sunday, May 12, 2019
SHREVEPORT, THERE'S NO PLACE LIKE THIS TOWN: OUR CITY'S SONGS (1934-1986)
Compiled in December 2012, liner notes revised May 2019.
Songs about Shreveport, songs recorded in Shreveport, songs by Shreveporters, songs on Shreveport record labels.
Listen online: https://www.mixcloud.com/shreveportsongs/8-shreveport-theres-no-place-like-this-town-our-citys-songs-1934-1986/
1 BUDDY WOODS WITH THE WAMPUS CATS Don't Sell It (Don't Give It Away) (Vocalion 3906, 1937)
The last commercial recording sessions by Shreveport's enigmatic blues guitarist Oscar "Buddy" Woods finds him paired with the equally mysterious Wampus Cats.
2 SIN-KILLER GRIFFIN AND CONGREGATION Wasn't That A Mighty Storm (Library of Congress AAFS 48, 1934)
Born in Caddo Parish in 1863, traveling evangelist John L. "Sin-Killer" Griffin became most well known for conducting religious revivals around Dallas, Texas, beginning in the 1880s. John Lomax recorded this song at the Darrington State Prison Farm in Sandy Point, Texas, when SG worked as a chaplain to black convicts.
3 SHELTON BROS. (BOB AND JOE) Knot Hole Blues (Decca 5653, 1938)
Originally from East Texas, the SBs spent long stretches in Shreveport during the 1930s thanks to their employment by KWKH. In addition to radio broadcasts, they maintained a prolific recording career issuing records under their name as well as others (see: Lone Star Cowboys, Sunshine Boys, Jimmie Davis).
4 ODIS ECHOLS AND HIS MELODY BOYS Dreary Midnight Blues (Red Barn RH1160, 1948)
In the years immediately preceding the launch of the Louisiana Hayride in 1948, itinerant country musician OE and his band hosted a radio show on KWKH. Band members included locals Jack Ford (guitar) and Sleepy Brown (trumpet).
5 THEODORE WILBURN WITH THE WILBURN FAMILY Down in Dixie (Where They Say You All) (4 Star 1490, 1950)
During the summer of 1949, the Wilburn Family relocated to Shreveport thanks to fellow country musician Zeke Clements. While living here for a couple years, they maintained a morning radio show on KWKH and were regulars on the Louisiana Hayride.
6 CLARENCE LONDON Goin' Back To Mama (Fidelity 3009, 1952)
When reissued on a 1970s compilation LP, the liner notes described CL as a construction worker that hung around Stan Lewis's record shop.
7 SLIM WHITMAN North Wind (Imperial 8208, 1953)
Shreveport mailman and singer SW skips the yodeling on this song. Hear steel guitarist Thomas "Hoot" Rains with his trademark "shooting arrows" technique.
8 JACKSON GOSPEL SINGERS Satisfied (Jackson Gospel Singers 103, circa 1955)
From 1945 to 1957, Reverend Anderson Samuel Jackson Jr. pastored Mount Canaan Baptist Church. Around this time, he also hosted a radio show on KENT and released this record.
9 AL JONES Mad, Mad World (Poplar 104, 1957)
This is what you sound like when your dad is a Bossier City police captain, your brother is a stunt man on the Mod Squad, your sister is Billie Jean Horton, and your brothers-in-law are Hank Williams and Johnny Horton. Music provided by Jesse Stone and his orchestra.
10 JOHNNY GOSEY I Lost My Baby ('Cause I Can't Rock And Roll) (MOA 1001, 1959)
Here's the first release on Wilson Evans's Music of America record label. On this song, Evans shares songwriting credits with Alex "Snook" Jones. Jones and his band the Nite Hawks provide the musical accompaniment.
11 CHARLES PERRYWELL AND HIS FAIRLANES Your Lonesome Now (Tic-Toc 104, 1961)
Though this Lake Charles record label managed to misspell both "Pennywell" and "you're," they did release a flawless song by this Shreveport vocal group. These days, Charles "Diamond" Pennywell lives and performs in Las Vegas.
12 LUCKY CLARK So Sick (Chess 1782, 1961)
In the early 1960s, Tommy Lee "Lucky" Clark spent time in Shreveport. Songwriter credits for this song list local record men Dee Marais and Stan Lewis. By the 1970s, LC was playing bass for the Suzi Arden show at the Mint Hotel in Las Vegas.
13 VINCENT WILLIAMS Do I Have A Chance With You (RAM 2100, 1961)
Originally from nearby Longview, Texas, VW played in Shreveport clubs and connected with Mira Smith to release this 45 on her label.
14 ARNIE CARVER John Kennedy Ballad (Carver 101, circa 1965)
Amateur folk rock by mystery musician AC. Publishing credits indicate the involvement of Dee Marais, who co-ran Murco Records and operated the Bayou Music Shop.
15 JAMES BURTON Jimmy's Blues (Miramar 108, 1965)
One of the few records where prolific guitarist JB receives top billing. He shares the songwriting credits with Joe Osborn (bass) and Mickey Jones (drums).
16 THE BAD HABITS Hook Nose And Wooden Leg (Scepter 12126, 1965)
Taking cues from the sound of the Newbeats, this band included Jerry Beach (guitar) and Danny Harrelson (piano). In recent years, Beach performed with Robin And the Bluebirds and hosted the Monday Night Blues Jam at Lee's Lounge.
17 ART AND PAT Gonna Leave You (Doric 101, circa 1965)
Art (Tucker) and Pat perform a song arranged by Dean "Al" Mathis and written by Mira Smith and Margaret Lewis.
18 RON GRAY Hold Back The Sunrise (Hanna-Barbera 488, 1966)
When RG recorded this song, he had recently changed careers from banker to disc jockey. He hosted "Road Show," a weekday afternoon radio show on KWKH.
19 LITTLE DUCK AND THE QUACKERS Excuse Me (Ronn 19, 1968)
This wild novelty record appears to be The Uniques in disguise. Written by "R. Mills" (Ray Mills played lead guitar in The Uniques) and arranged by Joe Stampley (singer and keyboard player in The Uniques).
20 BILL BOHANNON Shreveport, Louisiana (Paula 292, 1968)
With lyrics like these, you'd expect this to have been underwritten by Shreveport's Chamber of Commerce! BB worked as a DJ for KWKH and as operations director for KRMD.
21 DORI GRAYSON I Can Fix That For You (Murco 1045, 1968)
DG only released three 45s, yet they make her a serious contender for the best 1960s female soul singer in Shreveport. This song appeared on her second 45.
22 DALE & RAY WITH THE TEXAS OILERS Legal Tender (Black Gold 2, circa 1970)
The sleeve for this 45 yields few clues: "Dale & Ray with the Texas Oilers from Shreveport." Record label address in nearby Marshall, Texas.
23 NITA EUBANKS You Ain't Woman Enough (Purple Turtle 101, circa 1970)
With a record label address at the Lane Building downtown, here's one of Shreveport's contributions to the "bizarre records by children" genre. 11-year-old NE channels her inner Loretta Lynn.
24 STANLEY WINSTON No More Ghettos In America (Jewel 149, 1970)
SW, a native of New Roads, Louisiana, recorded this song at Sound City Studios in Shreveport. The studio's engineer, George Clinton, served as music arranger of the recording.
25 ADOLPH & THE ENTERTAINERS Old Folks Shuffle Part 1 & 2 (Alarm 103, circa 1972)
Local record label Alarm issued two 45s by Adolph Washington, which may have been the group's only releases. Here's both sides of their second record.
26 FONTELLA BASS Home Wrecker (Paula 389, 1973)
Best known for her 1965 hit "Rescue Me," St. Louis's FB released a few records on Paula in the early 1970s. This song, composed by locals Bobby Patterson and Jerry Strickland was recorded at Sound City Studios on Line Ave.
27 BARBARA FLOWERS JOY Foot Stompin' (Joy, 1986)
This record appears to have been self-released by BFJ. Herman Finley, who served as music director at Mount Canaan Baptist Church, handled production duties.