Saturday, March 14, 2015

Presented today are a couple of interesting early '60s LPs on the Guest Star label, a budget imprint of the Synthetic Plastics Company of Newark, New Jersey. Both albums contain material leased from Don Pierce's Starday label, including some fairly rare titles.
Most interesting from a collector's standpoint is Guest Star G 1492, "Stars & Guests Of The Louisiana Hayride". Although these LPs feature only generic back slicks without any information about the specific album, it is clear Pierce dug deep into his catalog to compile a collection by artists who, as the title suggests, were at one point either cast members or guests of KWKH Shreveport's legendary Louisiana Hayride. There are some real gems contained on this album, the discographal data of which follows:

1. Nothin' But True Love (S. Singleton-P. Williams) - Margie Singleton (Starday 443, 1959)
2. One Life (T. Franks) - Johnny Mathis (Mercury 71273X45, 1958)
3. Thanks For Nothing (Justin Tubb) - Red Sovine (Starday 579, 1962)
4. All Alone (Hal Harris-La Beff) - Sleepy La Beff (sic) (Mercury Starday 71112X45, 1957)
5. Lonely Street (B.Barnes-Wanda Harrison) - Benny Barnes With The Echoes (Mercury 71284X45, 1958)
6. I'm Not Long For This World - Sonny Burns (Starday unissued, 1954)
7. Hershey Bar (E. Bond) - Eddie Bond (Mercury 71153X45, 1957)
8. Long Time Gone (T. Edwards-A. Jones) - Tibby Edwards (Mercury Starday 71113X45, 1957)
9. Go On Bruce - Merle Kilgore (from Starday SLP 251, "There's Gold In Them Thar Hills", 1963)
10. Another Man's Wife (My Mother) (Hoot Rains-Curley Herndon) - Hoot and Curly with The Western Cherokees (Starday 153, 1954)

Another great collection, although containing somewhat more typical Starday LP fare, is GS 1415 "All-Time Great Country & Western Songs Starring Benny Martin". I guess this is where the "guest star" angle comes in, as this is not a Benny Martin LP, but a various artists compilation "starring" (?) Benny. It gets a little odder yet; the track contained by Martin is not "Tennessee Rag" as listed but "Big Tiger Special" (both tunes were contained on Martin's 1961 Starday LP "Country Music's Sensational Entertainer"), a recording that clocks at about a minute and a half, but here is doubled in length by simply fading the beginning of the recording back in over the ending strains. Starday was famous for leasing chopped up versions of songs for budget compilations to make them shorter and thus fit more titles on an LP, but this is the only example I've come across to date where they did exactly the opposite! As the results made for particularly ridiculous listening, I did some editing of my own and restored the track to it's proper length. Discographal data is below:

 1. Big Tiger Special - Inst. (Martin) - Benny Martin (from Starday SLP 131, "Country Music's Sensational Entertainer", 1961)

 2. Wabash Cannonball (Mullican-York) - Moon Mullican (from Starday SLP 135, "The King Of The Hillbilly Piano Players", 1961)

 3. It's OK (Jones) - George Jones (Starday 247, 1956)

 4. Poor Old Me (B. Barnes) - Benny Barnes (Mercury Starday 71057X45, 1957)

 5. Little Footprints In The Snow (York) - The Willis Brothers (Starday 45-532B, 1961)

 6. You Are The One (Patterson) - Leon Payne (Starday 220, 1956)

 7. Boll Weevil - Jim Glaser and The Americana Folk Trio (from Starday SLP 158, "Just Looking For A Home", 1962)

 8. Hold Everything (Red Hayes) - Red Sovine (Starday 45-567 B, 1960)

 9. Mom And Dad's Affair (York-Fikes) - Cowboy Copas (Starday 45-476, 1959)

10. The Cat And The Mouse (as Intoxicated Rat on GS 1415) (F. Miller-T. Hill) - Frankie Miller (Starday 45-566 A, 1961)

"Stars & Guests Of The Louisiana Hayride"
Guest Star G 1492


1. Margie Singleton-Nothin' But True Love
2. Country Johnny Mathis-One Life
3. Red Sovine-Thanks For Nothin'
4. Sleepy Labeff-All Alone
5. Benny Barnes-Lonely Street
6. Sonny Burns-I'm Not Long For This World
7. Eddie Bond-Hershey Bar
8. Tibby Edwards-Long Time Gone
9. Merle Kilgore-Go On Bruce
10. Hoot & Curly-Another Man's Wife

*download here*

"All-Time Great Country & Western Songs Starring Benny Martin"
Guest Star GS 1415


1. Benny Martin-Big Tiger Special
2. Moon Mullican-Wabash Cannonball
3. George Jones-It's OK
4. Benny Barnes-Poor Old Me
5. Willis Bros.-Foot Prints In The Snow
6. Leon Payne-You Are The One
7. Jim Glaser-Boll Weevil
8. Red Sovine-Hold Everything
9. Cowboy Copas-Mom And Dad's Affair
10. Frankie Miller-Intoxicated Rat

*download here*


Jon said...

Thank you for the great music. Can you please post Maddox Brothers America's Most Colorful Hillbilly Band Vol. 1 & 2 and Far Across The Blue Water - Bill Monroe In Germany 1975 & 1989? Thanks very much!!