Sunday, November 23, 2008

Charlie Poole & The North Carolina Ramblers

Charlie Poole & the North Carolina Ramblers were one of the most popular string bands of the 1920s.The band recorded prolifically from 1925-30 a variety of songs and tunes in various styles.
Charlie Poole was born in 1892 in Spray, North Carolina.
He learned to play the banjo at an early age and developed his own style of three fingerpicking which was instrumental in defining the sound of the North Carolina Ramblers. He was joined initially by guitarist Norman Woodlief and later by Roy Harvey from West Virginia. Posey Rorer fiddled in the earlier sessions, and Lonnie Austin or Odell Smith in the later sessions.

Charlie was a bit of a wild man. Like many country performers to follow, Poole lived a fast life. He was a hard-drinking man, rowdy and reckless. This ultimately resulted in a premature death following a three week binge in celebration of a bit part in a Hollywood movie.
He went on a bender and died of heart failure before he could get to Hollywood.

"White House Blues":Recorded on September 20, 1926 in New York City. Poole sings and plays the banjo with Posey Rorer on fiddle and Ron Harvey on guitar on this tune about the McKinley assassination.


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