December 3, 2013

Blues and Rhythm Show 108 on 93.3 CFMU (Hamilton, Ontario)

Swear to Tell the Truth for Tuesday, December 3rd, 2013 (1:00-2:30 pm)

We’re very late posting this. This week’s program is a 90 minute feature on R&B and Soul music in Nashville. Nashville had a thriving R&B scene and developed its own local record industry. That Nashville became Music City, not just the historic home of the Opry but the center of the multi-miliion dollar country music industry, doesn’t seem to have meant a lot to the independent labels producing R&B and soul. They lasted as long as did independent labels in other places in the U.S. Meanwhile Nashville maintained its own distinct African American music scene and the record companies had a well of local talent from which to draw. Other components of the local music scene in Nashville were the record mail-order businesses operated by Randy Wood and Ernie Young, powerful radio stations, especially WLAC, and the “sound alike” recording companies who provided work for performers who could closely approximate the sound of hit recordings.

The local record companies recording R&B didn’t produce a lot of national R&B hits and even fewer crossover hits, but there appears to have been sales enough to sustain a number of labels, though many were short-lived. By the sixties, the local labels were attracting talent from around the South but our feature will mostly concentrate on Nashville performers on Nashville labels. We’ll play recordings from 1946 to, at least, 1969. Our intention was to carry our survey as far as the R&B revival in Nashville that took place in 1990s, but we decided that was a bridge too far.

On the Show:

Johnny Jones – Nashville Washboard Band – Radio Four – Sherman Williams  – Christine Kittrell – Rudy Greene – Larry Birdsong – Roscoe Shelton – Lucille Mathis – and others

Listen to the program at FM 93.3 in Hamilton or on CFMU online at cfmu.mcmaster.ca. The program will be available to stream or as a podcast until December 31st.

Contact Us

To reach us with comments or queries, write us at sweartotellthetruth@gmail.com.

You can also follow the program at sweartotellthetruth@nosignifying on Twitter.

Next week (December 10th)

We don’t have a plan. No special feature next week. It will be a mixed bag.



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