Today: The late Jimmie Rodgers was born in 1897 – 115 years ago

 

The most inspiring type of entertainer for me has always been somebody like Jimmie Rodgers, somebody who could do it alone and was totally original. He was combining elements of blues and hillbilly sounds before anyone else had thought of it. He recorded at the same time as Blind Willie McTell but he wasn’t just another white boy singing black. That was his great genius and he was there first… he sang in a plaintive voice and style and he’s outlasted them all. ~Bob Dylan

“He was a performer of force without precedent with a sound as lonesome and mystical as it was dynamic. He gives hope to the vanquished and humility to the mighty.” ~Bob Dylan

From Wikipedia:

Birth name James Charles Rodgers
Born September 8, 1897
Origin Meridian, Mississippi, USA
Died May 26, 1933 (aged 35)
Genres Country, blues, folk
Occupations Singer-songwriter,musician
Instruments Acoustic guitar
Years active 1927–1933
Labels RCA Victor
Associated acts

James Charles “Jimmie” Rodgers (September 8, 1897 – May 26, 1933) was an American country singer in the early 20th century known most widely for his rhythmic yodeling. Among the first country music superstars and pioneers, Rodgers was also known as “The Singing Brakeman”, “The Blue Yodeler”, and “The Father of Country Music”.

 

 From allmusic.com – David Vinopal:

His brass plaque in the Country Music Hall of Fame reads, “Jimmie Rodgers‘ name stands foremost in the country music field as the man who started it all.” This is a fair assessment. The “Singing Brakeman” and the “Mississippi Blue Yodeler,” whose six-year career was cut short by tuberculosis, became the first nationally known star of country music and the direct influence of many later performers, from Hank SnowErnest Tubb, and Hank Williams to Lefty Frizzell and Merle HaggardRodgers sang about rounders and gamblers, bounders and ramblers — and he knew what he sang about. … read more @ allmusic.com

 Legacy:

  • When the Country Music Hall of Fame was established in 1961, Rodgers was one of the first three (the others were Fred Rose and Hank Williams) to be inducted. 
  • Rodgers was elected to the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1970 and, as an early influence, to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 1986. 
  • “Blue Yodel No. 9″ was selected as one of The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s 500 Songs that Shaped Rock and Roll. 
  • Rodgers was ranked No. 33 on CMT’s 40 Greatest Men of Country Music in 2003.
  • Both Gene Autry and future Louisiana governor Jimmie Davis (author of “You Are My Sunshine”) began their careers as Jimmie Rodgers copyists
  • Merle HaggardHank Snow, and Lefty Frizzell later did tribute albums. 
  • In 1997 Bob Dylan put together a tribute compilation of major artists covering Rodgers’ songs, “The Songs of Jimmie Rodgers, A Tribute”. The artists included BonoAlison Krauss & Union Station, Jerry GarciaDickey BettsDwight YoakamAaron NevilleJohn MellencampWillie Nelson and others. Dylan had earlier once remarked, “The songs were different than the norm. They had more of an individual nature and an elevated conscience… I was drawn to their power.”
  • Rodgers was one of the biggest stars of American music between 1927 and 1933, arguably doing more to popularize blues than any other performer of his time. 
  • Rodgers influenced many later blues artists, among them Muddy WatersBig Bill Broonzy, and Chester Arthur Burnett, better known as Howlin’ Wolf. Jimmie Rodgers was Wolf’s childhood idol. Wolf tried to emulate Rodgers’s yodel, but found that his efforts sounded more like a growl or a howl. “I couldn’t do no yodelin’,” Barry Gifford quoted him as saying in Rolling Stone, “so I turned to howlin’. And it’s done me just fine.”
  • Rodgers’ influence can also be heard in artists including Tommy Johnson, the Mississippi Sheiks, and Mississippi John Hurt, whose “Let the Mermaids Flirt With Me” is based on Rodgers’ hit “Waiting On A Train”.
  • In “Cleaning Windows,” Van Morrison sings about listening to Rodgers.
  • In May 2010, a second marker, on the Mississippi Country Music Trail, was erected near Rodgers’ gravesite, marking his role as The Father of Country Music
 

Check out:   www.jimmierodgers.com

Blue Yodel No 1 (T For Texas):

Waiting for a Train:

Album of the day – Essential Jimmie Rodgers:

Other September 8:

  • Patsy Cline (September 8, 1932 – March 5, 1963), born Virginia Patterson Hensley, was an American country music singer as part of the early 1960s Nashville sound. Cline successfully “crossed over” to pop music. At age 30, she died at the height of her career in a private plane crash. She was one of the most influential, successful and acclaimed female vocalists of the 20th century.

  • Bone Machine is a critically acclaimed and award-winning album by Tom Waits, released in 1992 on Island Records. It won a Grammy Award for Best Alternative Music Album, and features guest appearances by Los Lobos‘ David HidalgoPrimus‘ Les Claypool, and The Rolling Stones‘ Keith Richards.

    Released September 8, 1992
    Recorded Prairie Sun Recording, Cotati, California
    Genre Rock, experimental rock, blues rock
    Length 53:30
    Label Island
    Producer Tom Waits
  • Alecia Beth Moore (born September 8, 1979), better known by her stage name Pink (often stylized as P!nk), is an American singer-songwriter, musician and actress. 
  • Aimee Mann (born September 8, 1960) is an American rock singer-songwriter, guitarist and bassist.

-Egil

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