Tuesday, 18 January 2011

Updates 18 Jan 2011

I have a couple more photos of Billie and Gordon Hamrick, kindly sent to me by their son, Marty. I have also included scans of the Facebook page dedicated to the artists.
Facebook Page

Facebook Page

The Hamricks performing a reunion 1990's
B&G Hamrick (Unk Date)

COWTOWN RECORDS 605

COWTOWN RECORDS 605
PO Box 1694, Fort Worth, TX
Jan 57   (BMI clearance on 15th Feb 1957)
GENE HARRELL
45-605-A - I Won't Be Back No More
(Mary L Miller)   (Starrite BMI)
45-605-B - Mumbles
(Daphine Orme)   (Starrite BMI)

Label owned by John W Stephenson. More of a vanity / Custom Press label than a song poem concern, he did manage to release quite a few great records in amongst the dross. The label was still going through the 70's.


As for Gene, he was performing at the time at Chaylor's Night Club in Texerkana, TX at the time of this release. For some reason, there seems to be two pressings of this disc. (MC/PJT/AT)
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Phillip J Tricker




Phillip J Tricker




Phillip J Tricker

MOVIECRAFT RECORDS 604

MOVIECRAFT RECORDS 604
930 West 7th Place, Los Angeles, CA
Dec 56
ROD BURTON
45-604-A - Wedding Bells Are Ringing For The Bride
(No info)   (No info)
45-604-B - My New Sensation
(No info)   (No info)

Another musical bank. Missed a copy on a set sale list about 10 years ago and seen sight or sound of it since.


The label had moved by 1957 and was located at 6766 Hawthorn Ave, Los Angeles and any correspondence was care of Gerard Enterprises.


Confusingly, I have also seen listed another disc (Drake Morgan - My Heart Believes / Are You The One - Movie Craft 605) which may or may not be a Starday Custom, or perhaps 604 isn't one after all. Only actually seeing a copy is going to sort this one out. (MC)

TREND RECORDS 603

TREND RECORDS 603
Grand Canyon, AZ
Dec 56   (BMI clearance on 15th Feb 1957)
KEN PATRICK with Chet Tant on Steel Gtr
45-603-A - Snow Flake
(No info)   (Starrite BMI)
45-603-B - Do You Love Me
(No info)   (Starrite BMI)

No info. Never actually seen or heard this record. I've been to the Grand Canyon though, if that helps :-)

STARDAY RECORDS 602


STARDAY RECORDS 602
Dec 56   (BMI clearance on 15th Feb 1957)
FRANK EVANS and his Top Notchers
45-602-A - Barrel Of Heartaches (And A Bucket Of Tears)
(J Dunklin / J Rowell)   (Starrite BMI)
45-602-B - If You Knew
(Bonnie Burke)   (Starrite BMI)

Recorded at WHBO with Arnold Newman (Ld Gtr), Roland Newman (fiddle), Colin Thomas (Steel Gtr), Walter Studenberg (bass) and Frank on Vocals and rhythm guitar. Although neither side stands out, they are pleasant enough to listen to more than once, but sound musically inferior to their other offerings. As the Billboard advert below shows, they were performing over WHBO 5 days a week and performing live frequently.


Anybody out there got better quality label shots for this disc? For some reason, they've come out quite blurred.
(With thanks to Andrew Brown - Frank Evans article in Hillbilly Researcher #24, Al Turner, PJ Tricker)
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Phillip J Tricker


From Billboard 3 Nov 56


Phillip J Tricker



CIMMARON RECORDS 601

CIMMARON RECORDS 601
Lamarr, CO
Dec 56
FRANK BOWEN and Dave Warren and the Ark. Valley Wranglers
45-601-A - A Broken Heart
(Bowen/Warren)   (Starrite BMI)
45-601-B - Rock And Roll Blues
(Bowen/Warren)   (Starrite BMI)

Originally, this post was the usual one liner about having no info. But then I stumbled across a Blog called Pueblo City Limits and lo and behold - a wealth of info (well, compared to many of the artists listed on this site). 


The story starts with Gene Clay, founder of the Ark. Valley Wranglers, which was the most popular country band in Lamar, CO. Between 1949 and 1955, they were playing over KLMR (Lamar, CO) and performing at many local watering holes,(Spot 50 Tavern in La Junta and the Eagles Club in Lamar to name just two),  high school dances, American Legion halls etc. But in 1955 two members of the band joined the US Army and one moved to Pueblo to attend college, so the band took a break.


Meanwhile, another local band, The Rhythm Ranch Boys were performing locally and gravitating towards the Rock & Roll end of the music market. Wanting to make a record but not knowing where to start, Frank and Dave approached Gene for advice. As he had some influence at KLMR, he arranged a recording session there, but on the condition he was allowed to use his own band's name on the record. So the Rhythm Ranch Boys became part of the Ark. Valley Wranglers. 


Recorded in the fall of 1956, they recorded two of Frank and Dave's compositions and despatched the tracks to Starday Records for pressing on their Cimmaron label (after nabbing the publishing on both sides). Boxes of records came back with postcards to be sent to radio stations that they sent to DJ's with the hope of some airplay. 


The A side is a pleasant enough country/hillbilly weeper with lovely harmony vocals on the chorus.  The B side is a nice relaxed rocker in the style of "Heartbreak Hotel", but with a more "countryish" musical leanings and again features some nice harmonies. The band, compared to other Starday Customs, sounds very tight and professional. 


After spending another year with the Wranglers, Frank moved to Denver and started another band, called the "String-A-Longs". Later, moving to North Carolina, he worked in the insurance industry before retiring. Dave worked for the Denver police before setting in retirement in Missouri.


Huge thanks to Lisa Wheeler who kindly allowed me to plunder her excellent Blogspot for the info above. For the full story of Gene Clay and the Ark. Valley Wranglers (plus two short sound clips of  the record above), visit the link below.
Pueblo City Limits

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Lisa Wheeler




Lisa Wheeler