TUFF & STRINGY (SESSIONS 1966-68)
Big Beat CDWIKD 227
Available April 2003
Reissue producer: Alec Palao
Big Beats excavation of country rocks fascinating roots continues with a
volume dedicated to the incomparable Clarence White ? former Kentucky
Colonel, future Byrd, and one of a handful of true greats amongst the
instrumentalists of 20th century popular music. Clarences dazzling work in
those groups has been very well documented, but little is known about the
fascinating period that falls between.
This collection of rare singles, demos and studio outtakes does not claim to
make a definitive statement upon Whitefs career, or to even represent his
best work. Rather, the purpose of Tuff & Stringy is to shed some sorely
needed light upon two short years that were a pivotal stage in Clarencefs
development, not just as a guitarist but as an artist. You wonft find much
in the way of lengthy solos showcased here, but you will marvel at how this
consummate musician esat inf so beautifully with whatever material he
worked with, as well as how his earliest attempts at songwriting display an
innate knack for pop melody.
Tuff & Stringy includes all the solo sides Clarence cut for Gary Paxtons
Bakersfield International label, including the rarely heard gHong Kong
Hillbillyh ? the fabulous precursor to the well known Byrds instrumental
gNashville Westh. Much of the rest of the material is derived from
sessions that White and the Reasons ? Gene Parsons, Gib Guilbeau and Wayne
Moore, aka the legendary Nashville West ? worked for Paxton, accompanying
local country and pop acts, and tunes that were only ever released on
obscure, hard to find independent 45s. For all of these folk and country
rock gems, Tuff & Stringy is their first appearance on CD.
During the research for this package, a find of major academic significance
was made. Even the most astute Clarence-ophile will be unaware of the Zeke
Manners demos, an experiment at folk-rock undertaken by he and his brother
Roland towards the end of the Kentucky Colonels in 1966. These audio
snapshots are an intriguing glimpse of how the legendary eelectrifiedf
Colonels sounded, and the recordings quite possibly constitute the first
time Clarence was taped playing his newly purchased Telecaster in a estudio
The accompanying booklet contains a 10,000 word essay that goes into great
detail about Clarences activities during this murky period and his
relationship with Gary Paxton and the Reasons, based as it is upon fresh
recollections from all the enabling participants. It also includes a
discography that covers his other session work from the era. The waves
created by Clarence Whites idiosyncratic style are still forming ripples
within bluegrass, country and rockfnfroll. Tuff & Stringy shows you how he
CLARENCE WHITE ; HONG KONG HILLBILLY
GARY PAXTON ; MOTHER-IN-LAW
THE SPENCERS ; MAKE UP YOUR MIND
CLARENCE WHITE ?GRANDMA FUNDERBUNKS MUSIC BOX
WAYNE MOORE ; GUITAR PICKINf MAN*
THE SANLAND BROTHERS ; VACCINATION FOR THE BLUES
DARRELL COTTON ; DONfT PITY ME
LEON COPELAND ; I GOTTA GO SEE THE WORLD
THE KENTUCKY COLONELS ; EVERYBODY HAS ONE BUT YOU*
GIB & JAN ; SHEfS GONE*
CLARENCE WHITE ;TUFF & STRINGY
RICHARD ARLEN ; IfM TIED DOWN TO YOU
WAYNE MOORE ; HEY JULIANA
CLARENCE WHITE ; LAST DATE
DENNIS PAYNE ; IfLL LIVE TODAY
JACK REEVES ; NOT ENOUGH OF ME TO GO ROUND
DARRELL COTTON ; IF WE COULD READ
CLARENCE WHITE ; RIFF RAFF
WAYNE MOORE ; ROCKS IN MY HEAD
THE KENTUCKY COLONELS - MADE OF STONE*
CLARENCE WHITE ; BUCKAROO*
CLARENCE WHITE ; ADAM & EVE (backing track for LeGarde Twins)*
THE GREAT LOVE TRIP ; WHY CANfT WE BE
JAN & CLARENCE ; NATUREfS CHILD*
CLARENCE WHITE ; TANGO FOR A SAD MOOD
DARRELL COTTON ; IF WE COULD READ (backing track)*
* = PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED
From: "Vicki Roberts"
Sent: Friday, October 04, 2002 2:48 AM
THE UNHERALDED ROOTS OF COUNTRY ROCK
Bakersfield and California country unequivocably made their mark as the
rootsy alternative to Nashville in the 1960s, with the emergence of trailblazers
like Buck Owens, Merle Haggard and Wynn Stewart, all based in this unassuming
Central Valley city north of Los Angeles. The Bakersfield pioneers eschewed the
cookie-cutter niceties of Nashville country for a more authentic brand of country
that was not afraid to reflect overt rock and R&B influences. And in turn some
of LAs rock'n'roll community, many refugees from the folk scene, increasingly
saw the purity of country as an alternative to the complex direction rock was
headed in. The evolution of country rock in the southern California of the
mid-1960s has a myriad tangents, so many it is well nigh impossible to credibly
stack all of them up against each other in order of importance. The Byrds and
the Flying Burrito Brothers are the most visible of course, yet there still
remains those whose prescient work in the genre has too often been overlooked.
Foremost amongst whom must be Gary S Paxtons Bakersfield International label,
and its small but significant roster: Guilbeau & Parsons, the Gosdin Brothers
and the Reasons/Nashville West band.
Paxton was an incredibly diverse - and frequently misunderstood - musician,
but one thing he always identified with was the dimestore emotion of country,
and he was writing, recording and producing pure country right from the
early 1960s, even before he came to national prominence with off-centre
pop hits like "Alley-Oop" by the Hollywood Argyles and Bobby Picketts
classic "Monster Mash". Paxton applied his maverick production techniques
to all the country records he was involved in, and therefore by default
made them country rock of a kind. While the musicians he worked with in
the mid-1960s were far from ignorant of rock and pop, the way they
integrated the genres owed more to a country perspective.
It was not the self-conscious synthesis of the Byrds or Burritos.
Instead, steeped in the classic country tradition of old-fashioned,
honest-to-goodness picking, singing and songwriting, the Bakersfield
International label simply ploughed its own, unique and most fertile,
country pop furrow.
Bakersfield was informally known as Nashville West - and that was the
name that has been posthumously tagged to the Reasons, the combo that
acted as Gary Paxtons studio band during the day and blew audiences
away six nights a week at clubs and honky tonks throughout southern
California. Gram Parsons and various other nascent country-rockers
all journeyed from Hollywood to check out the hot combo playing country
with a rock'n'roll attitude. The Reasons were led by Gib Guilbeau and
Gene Parsons, the former one of country rocks most underrated
singer-songwriters, the latter a precocious multi-instrumentalist
talent and future Byrds drummer. And on lead guitar they featured the
inimitable Clarence White, the former Kentucky Colonel whose devastating
bluegrass-derived technique was standing people on their heads long
before he too gained widespread fame as a Byrd.
Clarence is more or less responsible for the way the lead guitar has
sounded in country rock ever since, but as Guilbeau and others are
uick to point out, the Bakersfield International musicians were a
collective - the singers or the various names on the labels may have
varied, but the sound was basically the same close knit set of
working musicians, all hopeful of the break that would take them out
of the bars and honky-tonks that were their livelihood. The only ones
to achieve any kind of tangible success were the Gosdin Brothers,
Vern and Rex, two Georgia-raised siblings with voices as intoxicatingly
pure as any heard in country before or since. Their 1967 single
"Hangin' On" was the only hit the disorganized Paxton was to have with
Bakersfield International, but the label left a small but significant
There have been live snippets of 'Nashville West' released in
the years since, but otherwise the groups studio recordings, as
both session men and as featured artists, have not been available
since they were issued on spottily distributed albums and singles
back in the mid to late 1960s. Vern Gosdin would subsequently
become a major country star in the 1970s and 1980s, but the
California country and folk-rock roots of Gosdin and his late
brother Rex have long been shrouded in mystery.
Therefore Big Beat is extremely proud to present a series of
collections that showcase this mythological tributary of country rock.
Guilbeau & Parsons Louisiana Rain reprises the duos recordings for
Paxton including the 1967 album that only appeared later as a
truncated budget release, along with rare singles, unissued masters
and fascinating home demos. Clarence White Tuff & Stringy/Sessions 66-68
pays tribute to the guitar legend with a packed collection that features
the solo instrumental sides cut for Bakersfield International as well as
the cream of his other appearances as a sideman from the era, including
several rarely heard White compositions. The Gosdin Brothers Sounds Of
Goodbye is a reissue of their classic 1968 album, a veritable touchstone
of country rock, bolstered by singles and unreleased material.
Many months of meticulous research have gone into the production
this series of CDs, which, along with the enthusiastic participation
of many of the surviving participants, lead to the discovery of
further gems for future release, as Big Beat continues to shed
fascinating light upon - and deliver overdue respect to - this
neglected but eminently important tributary of country rocks evolution.
GIB GUILBEAU & GENE PARSONS - LOUISIANA RAIN (Ace/Big Beat)
Released November 2002
Reissue producer: Alec Palao
E Big Beat is tremendously proud to announce a series of CDs drawn from
Gary S. Paxtons pioneering Bakersfield International label, a vital if
little-heralded outpost in the development of country rock.
Our debut is with Louisiana Rain, 25 tracks collecting Gib Guilbeau &
Gene Parsons' legendary 1967 sessions for the label, the first time
this fascinating, academically important yet hugely enjoyable
country/folk-rock material has been issued on CD.
E At the time of these recordings, Gib and Gene were part of
Paxtons regular session crew, in addition to performing nightly
at the bars and honky tonks of southern California with the legendary
'Nashville West' band, also featuring bassist Wayne Moore and the
groundbreaking country rock guitar of Clarence White.
Parsons and White of course would shortly join the Byrds, bringing
with them the Guilbeau/Parsons tune "Your Gentle Ways Of Loving Me",
included on Dr Byrds & Mr Hyde, although they always felt the original,
as featured here, was far superior.
E Louisiana Rain also celebrates the sorely underrated songwriting
talent of Guilbeau, who would later work with Linda Ronstadt,
Swampwater and the Flying Burrito Brothers. The collection features
early yet classic Guilbeau on cuts like "Sweet Susannah" (later covered
by Kris Kristofferson), "Workin' On A Tugboat" and
"Womans Disgrace" - a classy, hip country sound with added cajun spice.
E The many additional tracks include outtakes and home demos drawn
from Gib and Genes archives, plus rare related recordings - Guilbeaus
1969 single on Strawberry, "Home Of The Blues"/"Lodi", and Bruce E Oakes'
"On Pins & Needles", both of which feature the Nashville West band.
There is also the bonus of early folk-rock experiments like "World Of Dreams"
and "I'm A Fool".
E Utterly essential for Byrds and Burritos fans, fans of both the
Bakersfield Sound and hip country in general will love this release,
and the alt.country crowd will lap it up too. Comes with extensive notes,
based on interviews with the various participants and dispelling many
of the myths and rumours surrounding this magical moment in country rock history.
E Future instalments in the series include volumes on
Clarence White (Tuff & Stringy/Sessions 66-68) and The Gosdin Brothers.
from John Beland / Brisbane
Greetings from Brisbane where I now live.
Just curious if you could reccomend and acoustic
singer/songwriter listening room as well as country/folk
festivals in Japan.
Hope alls well with you.
John Beland Johnbeland1@aol.com
(website new address) www.belandmusic.com
Grady Martin Passed Away on 12-03-01
> from : Etsuo Eito
>This just in from country music historian Charles Wolfe:
> Guitar great Grady Martin died last night (Monday) at his home town of
> Chapel Hill, Tennessee, near Nashville. He was 72, and funeral plans are
> Grady was second only to Chet Atkins as an influence in the Nashville sound
> style, except that he was a much better jazz guitarist and improviser
> Atkins. Not only did he play on classic recordings of everybody from Willie
> Nelson to Bill Monroe, he often served as "session leader," in charge of
> putting together the crack studio bands featuring Tommy Jackson,
> Lloyd Green, Floyd Cramer, Bob Foster, and the likes.
> Grady actually started off playing fiddle with Big Jeff and his Radio
> in the mid-'40s, but soon switched to the new-fangled electric guitar, often
> working with Jabbo Arrington in Jimmy Dickens' band. He was usually
> be a quiet, behind-the-scenes, acknowledged backup man, but about 1950 he
> did sign a colo contract with Decca and did some wonderfully swing country
> jazz (much reissued on a recent Bear Family set). His "7th and Union," done
> with Jackson, swings as hard as any small group cut by Teddy Wilson, and his
> stuff with Red Foley is a veritable catalogue of hot guitar licks.
> I will always remember Grady with his movie-star good looks, holding his
> double neck Fender up like it was a rocket launcher, quietly creating
> breathtaking runs that would send all the younger Nashville players back to
> their rooms to try to figure out what he did.
> For those with streaming audio, WSM is currently doing a long
> call-in-and-retrospect of the man and his work, and I expect Eddie Stubbs
> will devote a show to him tonight.
> Charles Wolfe
Hello from John Delgatto
From ; Sierra Records
Date: : 2001hN11 28
Dear Mr. Koji Kihara:
I want to say hello and send you this update about our work with Clarence. You may or may
not know but I represent the Estate of Clarence White for his daughter Michelle.
Over the years we have been able to release both audio and videos of Clarence.
We have more surprises for release in 2002!!!!!
But for now, I hope you can post this information on your site.
SIERRA RECORDS MAIL ORDER NEWSLETTER
"NEW JOHN BELAND CD" FINNALLY HERE!!
"JOHN BELAND / BURRITO WORKS" IS NOW AVAILABLE THROUGH JOHN'S WEB SIGHT
THE NEWLY RE-MASTERED 14 TRACK CD COMPILES JOHN'S BEST WORK WITH THE FLYING
GUESTS INCLUDE BUCK OWENS, RICKY SKAGGS, ALISON KRAUSS, SONNY LANDRETH, SAM
BUSH, JO-EL SONNIER and others.
ALSO INCLUDED IS AN EXTENSIVE 8 PAGE BOOKLET WITH DISCOGRAPHY INFO AND
INTRODUCTORY PRICE OF ONLY $12.00 (plus shipping) AND JOHN WILL PERSONALLY
AUTOGRAPH THE FIRST 200 CDs SOLD.
FOR MORE INFORMATION ACCESS
"Updated Jonathan and David's Byrds Pages. !"
from Jonathan Bennett
Date: 15 Aug 2001
From: Jonathan Bennett
How are you? I haven't talked to you in awhile. I just wanted to let
you know I've updated my Byrds Pages. Now my brother David is helping me,
so it's Jonathan and David's Byrds Pages. I hope you are well!
"New Release from StringBender !"
from Meridian Green
Date: 25 May 2001
From: Meridian Green
The latest news from StringBender Music is the release of
Gene Parsons in Concert / I HOPE THEY LET US IN [SBR_002].
This live recording captures the warmth and intimacy of an effortless
but inspired show. Parsons plays banjo, guitar and harmonica and sings
a collection of 17 songs that span his musical history. From his pre-Nashville
West days in Cajun Gib & Gene, to his tenures with the Byrds and Flying
Burrito Brothers, from the Gene Parsons Band era to the more recent
Parsons & Green releases, Gene's music embodies American roots music.
From more information about this CD and to hear Real Audio samples:
Celebrating 40 years of ALLEY OOP!
To order go to StringBender's Secure Server:
More news from StringBender Records --
Slice Of Life Records has released Meridian Green / In The Heart Of
This Town and Gene Parsons in Concert / I HOPE THEY LET US IN in Japan.
Slice Of Life will release Gene Parsons / MELODIES and
Parsons Green / BIRDS OF A FEATHER later this summer. To order in Japan:
Fourteen years after the original release, Swing Down, a track from
Parsons Green / BIRDS OF A FEATHER makes the charts at #20 on the
FREE MP3 list at:
efolkMusic.com is a great resource for the best in acoustic recordings
and well worth a visit!
Great reviews for Meridian Green / In The Heart Of This Town are still
coming. Recently Alf Storrud wrote for the Folk & Acoustic Music Exchange,
"If anyone needs proof that the best roots music in America is currently
being produced by small independent companies, they should listen to
this CD by folk singer Meridian Green. With help from Gene Parsons she
has produced a true gem."
We sure do like using recycled electrons to stay in touch with our
musical friends. We love hearing back from you! And if you know anyone
who should know about us, please forward this message to them.
for StringBenders and StringBender Music visit
" A T r a d i t i o n o f M u s i c a l I n n o v a t i o n "
I am the producer of the Banjoman movie and soundtrack. I also play
guitar and am a big Clarence White fan. thank you for the discography
"Banjoman" movie & Michael Varhol
Thank you Michael !
The soundtrack "BANJOMAN" is one of the greatest live record ! Koji
"Banjoman" Album & "Banjoman" movie by Michael Varhol
One of Michael's work "Pee-Wee's Big Adventure".
Hello news media and music people!
Here's a very special press release for a friend of mine. Spread the
For Immediate Release
July 8, 2000
GARY S. PAXTON PUBLICATIONS, INC. and TIME FOR JOY PRODUCTIONS, INC. are
proud to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the release of the song,
3Alley Oop2 as recorded by the HOLLYWOOD ARGYLES. July 11th, 1960 marks
the date that this song reached the number one position.
For Gary S. Paxton, this song was one of his earliest hit recordings. As
a teenager, Mr. Paxton had recently moved to Hollywood following a
successful career as a singer/songwriter/producer in the pop duo SKIP AND
FLIP. Arriving in Southern California in the middle of the night, he was
about to run out of gas in the middle of the desert when he saw lights.
By a strange flu4ke of luck, these lights were coming from an all-night
gas station being manned by two youngsters named Dallas Frazier and Buddy
Mize. Dallas and Buddy were sitting on top of a desk playing guitars.
They recognized Gary from TEEN MAGAZINE as part of SKIP AND FLIP. They
begged him to listen to some songs, including a little ditty called
3Alley Oop," a tribute to a popular newspaper comic strip, and a new
alliance was formed that evening.
After settling into his new accommodations in Hollywood, Gary began his
new career in the Los Angeles recording industry.
One night about midnight, Gary S. Paxton and co-producer Kim Fowley
assembled a group of people to record Dallas Frazier1s song at a famous
Hollywood recording studio (American Studio). This studio was next door
to Lawrence Welk1s Palladium Ballroom and TV studio. Mr. Paxton
supervised the sessions, with Ronnie Silico on drums (Lloyd Price), piano
by Gaynel Hodge (The Penguins, The Coasters), Harper Cosby on bass
(Gerald Wilson1s Coconut Grove Big Band), and Sandy Nelson of 3TEEN
BEAT2 fame, who played percussion on a few garbage cans and provided the
caveman yells. Singing background vocals was Dallas Frazier, Buddy Mize,
Godoy Colbert (vocals for Richard Berry & the Pharaohs) and a tall
redheaded woman from Long Beach named "Diana." Gary S. Paxton provided
the musical arrangements and the lead vocals.
As the session came to end, Mr. Paxton walked out on the sidewalk in the
early morning sunlight, and spotted the street signs on the corner of
Sunset Blvd and Argyle Street. As he looked across the street and saw the
world famous Moulin Rouge restaurant he thought, 3People just won1t buy
the name The Moulins." The Argyle street sign reminded him of argyle
socks. As the White Socks seemed like a good name for a sports team, he
figured The Argyles would probably be a pretty good name for a music
group. Thus, the name "THE HOLLYWOOD ARGYLES" was created that day.
This song became a smash number one hit recording in 1960, and has been
featured in numerous record compilation albums, commercials and motion
pictures including the 1978 box office smash 3ANIMAL HOUSE."
Gary S. Paxton continues to be semi-active in the music business, as a
writer, mentor and teacher specializing in Christian gospel music. He
has an internet presence with his website GARYSPAXTON.COM working in
conjunction with TIME FOR JOY PRODUCTIONS, INC., where you can learn more
about his current music. Emphasizing music of a healing nature, Mr.
Paxton chooses to avoid the typical music industry events. Having been
misquoted more times than he1d preferred, Mr. Paxton cordially declines
most requests for interviews, preferring to let the music speak for
For more information, please contact:
Vicki Sue Roberts,
President of Time For Joy Productions, Inc. and
Administrator for Gary S. Paxton Publications, Inc.
writer/producer for Eric Predoehl Media Services
fax (408) 273-6988
New CDs of Clarence White on "THE BYRDS"
THE BYRDS ( UNTITLED / UNISSUED )
: COLUMBIA / LEGACY C2K 65847
2CDs ! CD 1 - Original (Untitled) Double LP Set !
CD 2 - 14 Previously Unissued Trax !
THE BYRDS Live at THE Fillmore February 1969
: COLUMBIA / LEGACY C2K 65910
Completely Unreleased 1969 Concert !
16 Never-Before Heard Trax !
THE BYRDS Byrdmaniax
: COLUMBIA / LEGACY C2K 65848
3 Previously Unissured Bonus Tracks !
THE BYRDS Farther Along
: COLUMBIA / LEGACY C2K 65849
3 Previously Unissured Bonus Tracks and more !
Letter & Rare Photo of Clarence from John York
I have put up a never-seen- before photo of Clarence on my web
page at http://home.earthlink.net/~yorksong/ I hope you enjoy it.
Ilike your page alot because you have so much love and respect for
Clarence and his music. I send my best regards,
Thank you John, I love your great CD "CLAREMONT DRAGON".
I love your site .
The CWC editor's email address changed !
Dear subscribers of the CWC,
Just a few lines to let you know that the CWC editor's email address
changed. Please note the new email address.
Etsuo Eito firstname.lastname@example.org
the CWC editor
Gary S. Paxton Produced New C.D. for Greg Crowe !
Songlist on Greg Crowe's New CD "Greg Crowe"
written by Michael E. Shipley.
Gary S. Paxton Publications Inc./BMI
2.WHEN GOD MADE YOU HE WAS THINKING OF ME
written by Gordon Mote
Gary S. Paxton Publications Inc. /BMI
written by Kevin Wicker
Gary S. Paxton Publications Inc. /BMI
4.SHAKE THE DEVIL OFF
written by Dorothy Norwood and Johny
Koscinko Music/SESAC, Nadine Music
written by Gary S. Paxton and Dan Adkins
Gary S. Paxton Publications Inc./BMI, Song
6.CENTER OF MY JOY
written by Bill and Gloria Gaither and
Gaither Music/ASCAP, Century
7.ARE YOU MAKING A DIFFERENCE IN SOMEBODY'S LIFE
written by Gary S. Paxton and Vicki Sue Roberts
Gary S. Paxton Publications Inc./BMI
8.THE DAY HE WORE MY CROWN
written by Phil Johnson
9.A HOLY GHOST SERVICE MAKES THE DEVIL NERVOUS
written by Gary S. Paxton, Daryl Williams and Dan Adkins
Gary S. Paxton Publications Inc./BMI, Centergetic Music/ASCAP,
10.WHAT WOULD JESUS DO?
written by Michael E. Shipley
Gary S. Paxton Publications Inc./BMI
(pop mix/regular length)
(short edited radio version/regular mix)
"I first met Greg while he was the lead singer in the Blackwood Quartet. It was
obvious that he was annointed, and to me. that was and is still important. There are
a lot of great singers (and Greg is for sure that) but there aren't many who are
also anointed and are great people of God. Those attributes that are a part oh his
life make it much easier and a pleasure to work with them and produce them on
anointed songs. Without the anointing nothing means anything - Gospel or Christian
music becomes just another business deal...even if it is successful or makes money.
Greg chooses to sing to please God first, his family and church and then his
ministry to people in need and then to all others. As I near the end of my long,
very blessed career, that's the only kind of person-singer-minister-performer I
care to write and produce for. As I said, anointing is not only everything...it's
the only thing.
Yours in Jesus, Gary S. Paxton"
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