Clinch Mountain Echo

Ralph Stanley - 50th Anniversary Collection

(Rebel REB-1996) 1995


50th Anniversary Collection
CD Tray

This compilation was issued to commemorate Ralph's 50th anniverary in 1996 as a professional musician. Ralph had first played on the radio with Carter in Roy Sykes' band in October 1946, after having been discharged from the Army the same month.

The CD features 25 tracks from 1971-1990 and has a playing time of 62:22 minutes. There is some duplication with the earlier retrospectives, Classic Bluegrass and Bound To Ride, but most of the tracks, appear on CD here for the first time.

Ten of the 25 tracks are drawn from the Roy Lee Centers era, with seven from Keith Whitley's tenure as lead vocalist, seven with Charlie Sizemore and just one with Ernie Thacker. Whereas the previous two compilations lean more on Ralph's very productive period before Roy Lee was murdered in 1974, this CD gives more of an overall view of the post-Stanley Brothers sound, Ralph developed.

The CD is no longer in print, but second hand copies are still fairly cheap.

The liner notes are by John Wright, author of the 'Traveling The High Way Home' book on Ralph, and include details of a typical recording session, contrasting with the major label extravagances of the '70s.

From the liner notes: "It was all very unspectacular," said former lead singer Charlie Sizemore, reminiscing recently about his own period of recording with Stanley in the late seventies and early eighties. "Ralph would have a work tape of a song. It might be some old preachers singing it or it might be some band singing it or it might be, you know, just a tape that the song was on. And I would type up the lyrics to it and bring them to the rehearsal, so we'd have something to go by. And Ralph did that a fair amount, too. He would type the lyrics or hand write them. He can hand write them so you can read them, since he actually comes from a time when people knew how to write.
"Then at some point he would say, it might be a week or two weks in advance or sometimes it was real close, he would say, 'Boys, we're going to record Wednesday. You guys come up to the house Tuesday night and we'd be there at the dining room table with a little cassette recorder sitting there on top of the table and we'd fiddle around with a song till we thought we had it right. Ralph would generally not do a lot of playing. I think he did this more for the singing. He wanted to hear the singing back, you know?
"So we would just sing and play into that recorder. And then we would listen to it back and if something was out of whack we would know it. Otherwise we would just go on to the next song and we'd go through twelve songs. And then the next morning we'd go in and record."

The artwork makes uses of gold-ink which looks impressive but doesn't scan too well on the computer...

Track:
Title:
Time:
Date:
Original Release:
Banjo:
Fiddle:
Guitar/Lead vocal:
Guitar:
Bass:
Mandolin:
1
Little Birdie
02:18
22 Mar 1973
A Man And His Music
Ralph Stanley
Curly Ray Cline
Roy Lee Centers
Ricky Lee
Jack Cooke


P.D.
2
Hemlocks And Primroses
02:56
16 Feb 1976
Old Home Place
Ralph Stanley
Curly Ray Cline
Keith Whitley
Danny Marshall
Jack Cooke


Landon Messer / Curly Ray Cline / R. Stanley
3
Old Richmond Prison
02:18
02 Apr 1986
Lonesome And Blue
Ralph Stanley
Curly Ray Cline
Charlie Sizemore
Junior Blankenship
Jack Cooke


Emmett Barton Jr. / James Roy Barton
4
Hard Times
02:16
22 Mar 1973
A Man And His Music
Ralph Stanley
Curly Ray Cline
Roy Lee Centers
Ricky Lee
Jack Cooke


R. Stanley
5
Children Go Where I Send Thee
02:26
25/26 Mar 1975
Let Me Rest On A Peaceful Mountain
Ralph Stanley
Curly Ray Cline
Keith Whitley
Ricky Lee
Jack Cooke


P.D. arr C. Love
6
Green Pastures In The Sky
02:29
10 Dec 1971
Old Country Church
Ralph Stanley
Curly Ray Cline
Roy Lee Centers
Keith Whitley
Jack Cooke
Ricky Skaggs

P.D.
7
Flood Of '57
03:01
31 Aug 1971
Play Requests
Ralph Stanley
Curly Ray Cline
Roy Lee Centers
Keith Whitley
Jack Cooke
Ricky Skaggs

C. Stanley / R. Stanley
8
I'll Just Catch A Train And Ride
01:50
29 Mar 1978
Down Where The River Bends
Ralph Stanley
Curly Ray Cline
Charlie Sizemore
Junior Blankenship
Jack Cooke
Danny Marshall

R. Stanley
9
Room At The Top Of The Stairs
02:06
02 Apr 1986
Lonesome And Blue
Ralph Stanley
Curly Ray Cline
Charlie Sizemore
Junior Blankenship
Jack Cooke


Randall Hylton
10
Clinch Mountain Backstep
02:22
31 Aug 1971
Play Requests
Ralph Stanley
Curly Ray Cline
Roy Lee Centers
Keith Whitley
Jack Cooke
Ricky Skaggs

Ruby Rakes
11
I'll Wear A White Robe
02:13
09 Mar 1979
I'll Wear A White Robe
Ralph Stanley
Curly Ray Cline
Charlie Sizemore
Junior Blankenship
Jack Cooke


P.D.
12
Snap A Finger Jesus
02:42
05 Dec 1990
Pray For The Boys
Ralph Stanley
Curly Ray Cline
Ernie Thacker
Ralph 'Hank' Smith
Jack Cooke


John B. Preston
13
Hills Of Home
02:03
25/26 Mar 1975
Let Me Rest On A Peaceful Mountain
Ralph Stanley
Curly Ray Cline
Keith Whitley
Ricky Lee
Jack Cooke


Wendy Smith / R. Stanley
14
Bootleg John
02:05
16 Feb 1976
Old Home Place
Ralph Stanley
Curly Ray Cline
Keith Whitley
Danny Marshall
Ed Ferris


Marvin Charles Davis
15
I've Got A Mule To Ride
01:53
17 Dec 1981
The Memory Of Your Smile
Ralph Stanley
Curly Ray Cline
Charlie Sizemore
Junior Blankenship
Jack Cooke


Donnie Joe Mullins
16
Old-Time Pickin'
01:47
23 Feb 1971
Rebel F-310
Ralph Stanley
Curly Ray Cline
Roy Lee Centers
Keith Whitley
Jack Cooke
Ricky Skaggs

R. Stanley
17
Gloryland
02:44
23 Feb 1971
Something Old, Something New
Ralph Stanley
Curly Ray Cline
Roy Lee Centers
Keith Whitley
Jack Cooke
Ricky Skaggs

P.D.
18
Daniel Prayed
02:24
06 Feb 1985
I Can Tell You The Time
Ralph Stanley
Curly Ray Cline
Charlie Sizemore
Junior Blankenship
Jack Cooke


G.T. Speer
19
Beautiful Star Of Bethlehem
03:53
12 May 1977
Clinch Mountain Gospel
Ralph Stanley
Curly Ray Cline
Keith Whitley
Troy 'Renfro' Profitt
Jack Cooke


Robert F. Boyce
20
Man Of Constant Sorrow
02:52
31 Aug 1971
Play Requests
Ralph Stanley
Curly Ray Cline
Roy Lee Centers
Keith Whitley
Jack Cooke
Ricky Skaggs

R.D. Burnett
21
The Memory Of Your Smile
02:49
17 Dec 1981
The Memory Of Your Smile
Ralph Stanley
Curly Ray Cline
Roy Lee Centers
Junior Blankenship
Jack Cooke


Ruby Rakes
22
Gold Watch And Chain
01:59
06 Feb 1985
A Man And His Music
Ralph Stanley
Curly Ray Cline
Roy Lee Centers
Ricky Lee
Jack Cooke


A.P. Carter
23
I Just Saw The Rock Of Ages
03:12
22 May 1977
Clinch Mountain Gospel
Ralph Stanley
Curly Ray Cline
Keith Whitley
Troy 'Renfro' Profitt
Jack Cooke
Danny Marshall

John B. Preston
24
Traveling The Highway Home
02:07
12 May 1977
Clinch Mountain Gospel
Ralph Stanley
Curly Ray Cline
Keith Whitley
Troy 'Renfro' Profitt
Jack Cooke
Danny Marshall

Frankie Bailes / Walter Bailes
25
Little Glass Of Wine
03:35
17 Dec 1981
The Memory Of Your Smile
Ralph Stanley
Curly Ray Cline
Charlie Sizemore
Junior Blankenship
Jack Cooke


C. Stanley

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