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Thread: Ricky Skaggs in Wall Street Journal 11/16/13

  1. #1
    Registered User Josh Kaplan's Avatar
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    Default Ricky Skaggs in Wall Street Journal 11/16/13

    The Review section of the Saturday Wall Street Journal has a column called, "Playlist," where a different person each week writes about a song that is meaningful to them.

    Today's Playlist is written by Ricky Skaggs, about the Stanley Brothers' song, The Lonesome River. I don't know if this link will work because of the WJS paywall, but here are some excerpts.

    "Their song, 'The Lonesome River,' inspired me to play the mandolin.

    "The song broke my heart when I first heard it on the radio in the late '50s, and I cried. . . Pee Wee's mandolin kicks off the song, and when they hit the chorus, man that rocked my world.

    "The story goes that in 1961, after a performance, Pee Wee accidentally broke the mandolin he had used on the recording. He threw it in the garbage bin out back before driving off. Two musician-fans fished it out and had it fixed. Over the years, the mandolin changed hands about five times.

    "Then in 2010, mandolinist David Grisman called me and said he had Pee Wee's restored 1922 F-5 Lloyd Loar mandolin and wanted to sell it. I bought it. . . . That's a lot of history there."

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    Registered User Ivan Kelsall's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ricky Skaggs in Wall Street Journal 11/16/13

    The 'two musician fans' deserve a medal !. I wonder if Pee Wee threw it away in a bit of a huff & would have returned to fish it out of the garbage bin himself - we'll never know.
    I have several recordings by the Stanley Brothers,but 'The Lonesome River' isn't on any of them. I'll have to have a search on the I'net,
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    Registered User almeriastrings's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ricky Skaggs in Wall Street Journal 11/16/13

    'The Lonesome River' is extremely similar to 'The Hills of Roan County'.

    One of the old Columbia Recordings.

    A more recent version with Ricky himself...and the awesome Roy Lee Centers



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    Registered User Josh Kaplan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ricky Skaggs in Wall Street Journal 11/16/13

    I just found this thread about it from last year.


    Quote Originally Posted by Ivan Kelsall View Post
    The 'two musician fans' deserve a medal !. I wonder if Pee Wee threw it away in a bit of a huff & would have returned to fish it out of the garbage bin himself - we'll never know.
    I have several recordings by the Stanley Brothers,but 'The Lonesome River' isn't on any of them. I'll have to have a search on the I'net,
    Ivan

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    Registered User Josh Kaplan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ricky Skaggs in Wall Street Journal 11/16/13

    And this one from a couple of years before that.

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    Registered User J Mangio's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ricky Skaggs in Wall Street Journal 11/16/13

    Thanks for sharing Josh; that's an important part of mandolin history.

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    Registered User Russ Jordan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ricky Skaggs in Wall Street Journal 11/16/13

    Quote Originally Posted by almeriastrings View Post
    'The Lonesome River' is extremely similar to 'The Hills of Roan County'.

    One of the old Columbia Recordings.

    A more recent version with Ricky himself...and the awesome Roy Lee Centers

    That is John Duffey on mandolin and high baritone, not Ricky Skaggs
    Russ Jordan

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    Registered User almeriastrings's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ricky Skaggs in Wall Street Journal 11/16/13

    You're right. It was indeed Duffy on that cut.
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    Default Re: Ricky Skaggs in Wall Street Journal 11/16/13

    Spine tingling harmony! Is Roy Lee channeling Carter? As you say, awesome.

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    Registered User almeriastrings's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ricky Skaggs in Wall Street Journal 11/16/13

    Roy Lee was scary close to Carter.... I heard him live once - just once - with Ralph and it was just incredible. There is some amazing stuff from that period on the "Live in Japan" CD's. I heard them do "The White Dove" , "Choo Choo Coming" and other Carter-Ralph material and honestly, it was as if Carter himself was there. Never heard anything like it before or since. The accent, the timing... the harmonies, just mind blowing. It must have been quite strange for Ralph, especially.
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    Certified! Bernie Daniel's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ricky Skaggs in Wall Street Journal 11/16/13

    I've always really liked this version of Lonesome River by Skaggs, Patty Loveless and Marty Stuart. And Ricky really puts lonesome into the mandolin part too. Pretty awesome.
    Bernie
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    garded
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    Default Re: Ricky Skaggs in Wall Street Journal 11/16/13

    very awesome Bernie, thanks for posting that. Ricky's using some kind of "Get Up John" tuning? very cool and lonesome.

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    Registered User tree's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ricky Skaggs in Wall Street Journal 11/16/13

    The Skaggs/Loveless/Stuart clip above is a fine version, but it is still worth looking up the original (a Columbia record, I think 1951). I have it in a Stanley Brothers "The Columbia Years" 2 disc compilation. It is exactly like Ricky described it - the mandolin is powerful, and the harmonies in the chorus will raise the hair on your neck. I've never heard anything like it.
    Clark Beavans

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    Default Re: Ricky Skaggs in Wall Street Journal 11/16/13

    Ricky Wasson does a very soulful version as does Tim Shelton (of late) of Newfound Road.


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    Default Re: Ricky Skaggs in Wall Street Journal 11/16/13

    Hard to beat the Roy Lee Centers version with Duffey on the high tenor. also loved the Vince Gill/Grissman/Pederson on Here Today ... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uN4c0Hrphfw
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    Default Re: Ricky Skaggs in Wall Street Journal 11/16/13

    Ron Spears with James King .... What else can you say? ........
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    Registered User Kevin K's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ricky Skaggs in Wall Street Journal 11/16/13

    What tuning is Ricky's mandolin on that?
    "Can I have a little more talent in the monitors please?"

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