Sounds of the Ozark Folk
Volume I: The 1963 Arkansas Folk Festival
They were just “timber cutters, farmers, housewives, and all plain people of the hills.” That’s how folk music legend Jimmy Driftwood described the performers at Mountain View’s first Arkansas Folk Festival back in 1963. A new 2-CD collection produced at Lyon College lets us hear for ourselves the music of those timber cutters, farmers, and housewives who helped launch the Arkansas Folk Festival into Arkansas’s most popular spring event.
The CD collection, Sounds of the Ozark Folk: The 1963 Arkansas Folk Festival, features more than two hours of performances recorded in the old Mountain View High School gymnasium on those two April nights forty-two years ago. Among the musicians and singers featured in the collection are several of north central Arkansas’s best-known performers, including twin fiddlers Abbie and Apsie Morrison, Almeda Riddle, Ollie Gilbert, Neal Morris, Glenn Ohrlin, and Bookmiller Shannon. And, of course, Jimmy Driftwood emceed the festival and performed a few songs himself.
Sounds of the Ozark Folk was made possible by the recordings made by folklorist and Batesville native John Quincy Wolf, Jr. Wolf spent more than a decade recording folk musicians and singers in north central Arkansas and was largely responsible for introducing the world to Driftwood and other noted Ozark singers, such as Almeda Riddle and Neal Morris. After his death in 1972, his widow, Bess Millen Wolf, donated his folk music tapes to Lyon (formerly Arkansas) College. This new CD collection marks the first time that any of Wolf’s recordings have been made available for sale.
You can relive the magic of the original Arkansas Folk Festival and own a piece of Ozark history.
The Sounds of the Ozark Folk: The 1963 Arkansas Folk Festival limited edition CD collections are now available. To order yours, just print the order form and return it with check or money order to the address listed on the form. [ ORDER FORM ] Allow 4-6 weeks for delivery.
Sounds of the Ozark Folk
Disc 1 – The First Night
1. Eighth of January – Willie Morrison et al.
2. John Henry – Dwane Richardson and the Dewey Richardson band
3. Get Along Home, Cindy – Blair Family
4. Peek-a-boo Waltz – Blair Family
5. Wildwood Flower – Martha Hollister
6. Guitar Medley – Jimmy Driftwood
7. Soldier’s Joy – Morrison fiddlers
8. Liza Jane – Haskell Avey
9. Aloha ̀Oe – Haskell Avey
10. The Picture on the Wall – Bob Blair, Charles Johnson, and Dicey Johnson
11. Roll the Tater – Leslie Play Party Group
12. Jump Up, Kitty Puss – Fate Morrison and Dollie Gilbert
13. I Am Bound for the Promised Land – Lizzie Apple
14. Durang’s Hornpipe – Willie Morrison et al.
15. Willow Green – Ollie Gilbert
16. Rough and Rowdy Boys – Ollie Gilbert
17. Cripple Creek – Virgil Johnson
18. Sugar Hill – Virgil Johnson
19. Fiddle Tune Medley – Leslie Band
20. Twinkle Twinkle Little Star – Leslie Band
21. Old Joe Clark – Benson Fox and Jimmy Driftwood
22. Old Dan Tucker – Sara Jo Fendley
23. Bile Them Cabbage Down – Sara Jo Fendley
24. Ragtime Annie – Willie Morrison et al.
25. Kitty Wells – JoAnn Lancaster
26. Cackling Hen – Eugene Dodd et al.
27. Sugar Hill – Eugene Dodd et al.
28. Old Joe Clark – Benson Fox and Jimmy Driftwood
29. Wreck of the Southern Old 97 – Lloyd Hollister
30. East Virginia Blues – Martha Hollister
31. Babes in the Wood – Sandra Whisnant
32. Sanford Barnes – Jimmy Driftwood
33. Black-Eyed Susan – Bookmiller Shannon and Virgil Johnson
34. Seguirillas – Glenn Ohrlin
Disc 2 – The Second Night
1. Devilish Mary – Bookmiller Shannon
2. Cotton-Eyed Joe – Bookmiller Shannon
3. The House Carpenter’s Wife – Almeda Riddle
4. Story of Berry Sutterfield – Jimmy Driftwood
5. The Waxford Girl – Reba Dearmore
6. Wagoner – Sam Younger et al.
7. Silver Bells – Forrest Brannon et al.
8. Footprints in the Snow – Forrest Brannon et al.
9. I’ll Be Somewhere Listening – Blair Family
10. The Nightingale Song – Neal Morris
11. Jump Josie – Leslie Play Party Group
12. Down in the Arkansas – Jimmy Driftwood
13. Blackberry Blossom – Leslie Band
14. Durang’s Hornpipe – Leslie Band
15. Ragtime Annie – Sam Younger et al.
16. Cole Younger – Ollie Gilbert
17. Cripple Creek – Eugene Dodd et al.
18. The Hell-Bound Train – Glenn Ohrlin
19. The Wandering Boy – Ruth Miller
20. Lonesome Road Blues – L. B. Holland
21. My Son Johna – Fleecy Fox
22. Foggy Mountain Top – Sara Jo Fendley
23. Soldier’s Joy – Gertie Branscum
There wasn't room on the CDs for all the songs. Click here for the rest of the original festival songs.