Clinch Mountain Echo

Don Reno and Red Smiley - Bluegrass 1963

(Man-do-lin MP-0108) 2008

Don Reno and Red Smiley - Bluegrass 1963
DVD Jacket Ralph and Carter
Ralph and Carter Ralph and Don Reno
Ralph and Don Reno Don Reno, Red Smiley, Ralph and Carter
Don Reno, Red Smiley, Ralph and Carter The Tennessee Cut-Ups and The Stanley Brothers
Ralph and Carter Don Reno and Ralph

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This is a collection of old TV footage by Don Reno & Red Smiley circa 1963, which was re-broadcast on Ronnie Reno's Reno's Old Time Music Festival TV show. Although not mentioned anywhere on the artwork, The Stanley Brothers are featured as Reno & Smiley's guests on five tracks, which may date from 1962.[1]

Of the songs featuring the Stanley Brothers, In The Pines is performed by Ralph and Carter in front of a back projection screen, which shows slides of a railway track, trees and clouds. There then follows a duet with Ralph and Don Reno performing Home Sweet Home with the pair having swapped banjo's. Carter and Red then join them for a version of Over In The Gloryland with a back projection of stained glass windows. All three of the songs feature some off camera backing, presumably by members of the Tennessee Cut-ups.

Later on the DVD includes two songs with Ralph and Carter sitting in with Don Reno & Red Smiley with the Tennessee Cut-ups also in the frame. Here Carter and Ralph sing on the chorus to Nine Pound Hammer, with a young Ronnie Reno handling lead vocal on the verses; and there's an instrumental version of John Henry. Reno's banjo on these last two tracks is a different one to the earlier three cuts.

Picture quality on the DVD is variable, with the earlier tracks being better quality. One song, I'm The Talk Of The Town is originally from a film rather than video source and dates from 1957, it being the earliest footage of Reno & Smiley. In particular the latter half of the DVD suffers from quite severe video tape deterioration, but then it does give a wonderful opportunity to see one of the pioneering acts of bluegrass, so it's a case of being grateful anything has survived.

All of the songs featuring The Stanley's can be found on youtube, i.e. In The Pines; Home Sweet Home; Over In The Gloryland; Nine Pound Hammer; and John Henry.

Two of the tracks, The Stanley's In The Pines and Reno's Love Please Come Home were later included on the Families Of Bluegrass: An American Tradition DVD, although the quality is not as good as on this 'Bluegrass 1963' set.

Love Please Come Home

Leon Jackson
Down Yonder

L. Wolfe Gilbert
In The Pines - Stanley Brothers

Home Sweet Home - Don Reno & Ralp Stanley

Bishop / Payne
Over In The Gloryland - Reno & Smiley and the Stanley Brothers

J.E. Reynolds / W.P. Snyder
Where Is That Chord (comedy)

Bare Foot Nellie

Reno - Davis
Nine Pound Hammer - Reno & Smiley and the Stanley Brothers

John Henry - Reno & Smiley and the Stanley Brothers

Wouldn't Change You If I Could

Jim Eanes
Panhandle Country

Bill Monroe
Whispering Hope

Bill Bailey - 'Irving Sharp'

Arkansas Traveler

I'm Using My Bible For A Road Map

Reno / Schroeder
I'm The Talk Of The Town

Don Reno
Fisher's Hornpipe

I Know You're Married

Don Reno / Mac Magaha
Ballad Of Jed Clampett

Paul Henning
Patty On The Turnpike



Go To Top Of Page [1] A later DVD 'Families Of Bluegrass - An American Tradition' from 2010 identifies the In The Pines clip as from 1962.