Roy Harvey The Complete Recorded Works, Volume 4: 1931
- Released: February 6, 2001
- Originally Released: 2001
- Label: Document
- 1.By a Cottage in the Twilight
- 2.Blue Eyes
- 3.Goodbye Sweetheart Goodbye
- 4.Gambling Blues
- 5.John Hardy Blues
- 6.The Great Reaping Day
- 7.Someone Owns a Cottage
- 8.O Dem Golden Slippers
- 10.Lulu Love
- 11.Little Foot Prints
- 12.The Ring My Mother Wore
- 13.Where the Whippoorwill Is Whispering Good-Night
- 14.Called to Foreign Fields
- 15.My Mother and My Sweetheart
- 16.Wreck of the C&O Sportsman
- 17.My Fickle Sweetheart
- 18.(I'm So Lonely) Since My Darling Went Away
- 19.Telegraph Shack
- 20.Sone One
- 21.My Free Wheelin' Baby
- 22.They All Got a Wife But Me
Full title: Complete Recorded Works In Chronological Order Vol. 4 (1931).
Personnel includes: Roy Harvey (vocals, guitar); Ernest Branch (vocals, banjo); Bernice Coleman, Jess Johnston (fiddle).
Recorded in Richmond, Indiana and Atlanta, Georgia in 1931. Includes liner notes by Tony Russell.
Digitally remastered by Gerhard Wessely.
Personnel: Roy Harvey (vocals, baritone guitar); Earnest Branch (vocals, banjo); Jess Johnston (vocals, fiddle); Bernice "Bernie" Coleman (fiddle).
Audio Remasterer: Gerhard Wessely.
Liner Note Author: Tony Russell.
1931 was guitarist Roy Harvey's last year of recording activity. In early June, he cut 16 sides for Gennett with a small unit billed as the West Virginia Ramblers. Patterned to some extent after the North Carolina Ramblers (with whom Harvey had done some of his best work), the group included banjoist Ernest Branch and fiddlers Jess Johnston and Bernice "Bernie" Coleman. Everyone took turns singing in various combinations. Some of Harvey's featured vocals were "Gambling Blues" (very similar to "St. James Infirmary"), "John Hardy Blues" (later revisited by both Leadbelly and Woody Guthrie), and "Wreck of the C&O Sportsman," which was written by Bernie Coleman who, like Harvey, had worked on the railways for a living. Note that during the course of this version "John Hardy" takes on some of the qualities of Charlie Poole's "Hangman, Slack the Rope." Although surely his recently deceased friend Poole was still on Harvey's mind, the only verifiable Poole cover played by this band was "The Whippoorwill Is Whispering Good-Night." Note that "Little Footprints," also known as "Footprints in the Snow," was written by Ernest Branch. This was the song's first appearance on record. Roy Harvey's recording career tapered off suddenly with six sides cut for Okeh in Atlanta, GA in October 1931. Here he took a back seat to the other two participants, Bernie Coleman and Ernie Branch. Harvey took his last recorded vocal in unison with his two friends on "My Free Wheelin' Baby." This song, like the catchy "Telegraph Shack" (which begins and ends with someone imitating either a locomotive or steamboat whistle) was composed by Bernie Coleman. After these records were made, Harvey became a cop for awhile, and then took himself to Florida where he abandoned music altogether to revert back to his original vocation as a railroad engineer. ~ arwulf arwulf
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