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"I'LL FORGET YOU WOMAN"
Interview By Steve Kelemen
I was born November 12, 1927. I began to like country music back in 1936 when I heard a good Canadian
artist on the coast to coast hook-up out of New Year. His name was Montana Slim (Wilf Carter).
I lived on a little farm in Maryland. We did not have a radio but used to listen to Montana Slim on
my neighbours radio. I thought he was the greatest.
I began playing around on the guitar when the war came around. I was working at a cab stand at the
time. A fellow from Tennessee by the name of Reuben Gibson sold me a guitar for $9.00. I learned to
play from Reuben. He was from the same town as Jimmy Martin of the Bluegrass fame.
I played anywhere I could get anyone to listen to me including back alley brawls or outside bars as
I was too young to get inside.
I had five brothers enlist in the army during the war. I became the sixth and wound up in Battle
I worked quite a few shows around Baltimore and in 1949 I worked with Minnie Pearl and Tex Ritter
when they came up here. They held a talent show in their own theatre. It went for 7 days. First I
sang one of Hank Snows songs. For the last show Minnie Pearl told me to just sing, don't play the
guitar - just sing. You can hold the guitar but don't play it. Sing the song you were singing a
while ago - 'The Shenendoah Waltz'. I did what she told me to do and she was right. I got a nice
standing ovation. Minnie Pearl was a wonderful lady and I admired and respected her.
I also worked different places around Baltimore with Ray Davis. He was a great well known disc
jockey here. He booked a lot of tours from Nashville and I did get to perform on these shows with
the likes of the Louvin Brothers, Jimmy Dean and Jimmy Martin.
I was also on the Don Owens show with Roy Clark and Earl Taylor back in the 60's. I was managing
Earl Taylor at the time and got him on these shows quite often.
Butterball Page who was working with Ernest Tubb came to Baltimore with the Short Brothers. We got
together to record for the Rebel Label. I can't remember how I wound up getting there (Rebel) but
I did and Dick Freeland cut the records which was 'Before The Eyes Of The Whole Town' b/w 'The Story
Of My Wife' (Rebel 232)
The Second single was 'I'll Forget You Woman' b/w 'That Woman Barbara' (Rebel 235).
I performed with so many great artists over the years. I had alot of fun. Played shows with Jim
Reeves, George Jones, Ernest Tubb and Jack Cook.
I am happy people still like my music. Thank you.
Page posted March, 2007
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