Clinch Mountain Echo

The Goins Brothers - Bluegrass Hits Old And New

(REM 1041) 1969

Bluegrass Hits Old And New
Rear Cover Side One Side Two

Average Album Rating: 5
(Total votes 1)

  • 5 star
  • 4 star
  • 3 star
  • 2 star
  • 1 star

Please rate this album:

The debut LP by the Goins Brothers is a fabulous trad. bluegrass album, with an excellent choice of songs and delivery. The performances are energetic and with Paul Mullins gritty fiddle work, it's reminiscent of the Lonesome Pine Fiddlers at their best.

The REM album was released around 15th July and a 45: Old Shanghi / Black Lung Blues (REM 45-449) about a month earlier. The single was released about a "week-or-so" before the Goins Brothers appeared at the Bean Blossom festival in 19-22nd June 1969. In a live recording from the Festival Melvin says that the LP would be released around the 15th July & that the record had been cut about three weeks before the festival.[4] The LP was later reissued as 'Bluegrass Hits' with a different cover (M & R GL-1041). I presume this was a reissue by Melvin & Ray, given the label name.

According to the liner notes Melvin had left Ralph and the CMB's on 18th May 1969, which means he quit whilst Ralph was touring the West Coast.[1] Two songs from Melvin's 1969 spots playing with Ralph make appearances on this debut:- Ole Slew Foot plus a version of the Lonesome Pine Fiddler's Your No Good.[2] It's also interesting that Old Shanghi is musically almost identical to Ralph's Let's Go To The Fair, with different lyrics. As Ralph cut Let's Go To The Fair (for the Hills Of Home LP) about two months after Melvin had left, it's kinda curious that the two songs should be so similar. In Gary Reid's liner notes to the Poor Rambler 3-CD set, he mentions that The Stanley Brothers had performed Let's Go To The Fair on the 'Farm and Fun Time' radio show back in the early days, so perhaps Melvin had been performing the song with Ralph & came up with the new lyrics?[3] The 45 version of Old Shanghi, can be found on youtube.

Both Ray and Melvin had a lengthy history playing with the Lonesome Pine Fiddlers, and the LP includes four of their old numbers:- My Brown Eyed Darlin', Dirty Dishes Blues, You're No Good and Death Came Creeping In My Room. The latter, written by Curly Ray Cline, was also re-recorded on his Smarter Than The Average Idiot LP.

There's also a version of Jimmy Martin & the Osborne Brothers' Across The Sea Blues; Jim Eanes' Old Stand By / Worm Wiggle Wiggle; and the Louvin Brothers' The Family Who Prays.

Black Lung Blues is co-credited to Mike Paxton, who was a DJ for WLSI in Pikeville Ky. He is credited on many of the Goins Brothers songs including:-

At least eight of the album's twelve cuts were later re-recorded by The Goins Brothers:-

Side One:
Brown Eyed Darlin'

Ray Cline / Paul Williams
Across The Sea Blues

Jimmy Martin
Ole Slew Foot

Dirty Dishes Blues

Gene Masters
Kentucky Breakdown

Melvin Goins / Ray Goins
Old Stand By

Jim Eanes
Side Two:
Black Lung Blues

Mike Paxton / Melvin Goins / Ray Goins
Old Shanghi

Melvin Goins / Ray Goins
Wiggle Worm Wiggle

Jim Eanes
You're No Good

Charlie Cline / Ray Cline
(The) Family Who Prays

Charles Louvin / Ira Louvin
Death Came Creeping In My Room

Ray Cline


Go To Top Of Page [1] Melvin is present on a recording of Ralph's Montreal show from 26th April 1969, but on the 27th May performance in Seattle Ralph announces that Melvin is sick and back in Kentucky & local musician Barney Munger fills in. The Seattle show has been released as the 2-CD Live In Seattle - 1969.
[2] both tracks are featured by Melvin on Ralph's Montreal 26th April 1969 show.
[3] I asked Gary Reid about the liner notes to 'Poor Rambler', to which he replied: "Re Farm & Fun Time. This has been a looong time ago. As best I can remember, I think it was a fellow by the name of Willard Blevins who told me this, in a telephone conversation. (He contributed Stanley Bros. photos to the March 1972 edition of Muleskinner News.) He said he remembered hearing it performed on Farm & Fun Time by the Stanleys. I pressed him about, making sure he was talking about "Let's Go to the Fair" and the Stanley Brothers. Yes, he told me. On Farm & Fun Time. To my knowledge, there's no transcription of it."