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Author Topic:  Lloyd Green on Charley Pride (Panther Hall and more)
Tim Tweedale

 

From:
Vancouver, B.C., Canada
Post  Posted 8 Sep 2009 9:45 am    
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I often find myself going back and re-reading the messages that Reggie Duncan relayed from Lloyd Green, especially with regard to his recording career with Charley Pride, and specifically with regard to his album, Live At Panther Hal (my all-time favourite steel-featuring album).

So for your enjoyment,
here's what Lloyd had to say:

"A few weeks ago I recorded a new gospel cd with Charley Pride at Jack "Cowboy" Clements studio. Inevitably the conversation drifted back to that hot July night in 1968 when we played the show and RCA recorded the "Live At Panther Hall" album.
Clement clarified my prior statements about the recording itself. RCA Records did indeed fly in a 4-track analog tape recording machine for the project, with Al Pachucki mixing and Tom Pick rewinding the tape. Imagine, two recording engineers to run on 4-track machine!
However.....while there were 4 tracks available Jack Clement said he used only 3; the band, including myself, were split on two tracks for stereo, Charley Pride on the third. The fourth track was kept unused for Charley to overdub any or all of his vocals later. Obviously he didn't, which adds to the charm of this "live" album.
But this fact makes all the more remarkable the steel sound and volume level, considering I was on a track with two or three other musicians. I had worked hundreds of sessions with Pachucki mixing so he knew my playing and nuances like a book. It is equally obvious he was monitoring the fader for my mike with a delicate hand since I had most of the instrumental and fill focus.
The amp was almost certainly a 1968 silver- faced Fender Twin since it was brand new and had been rented for the occasion from a Dallas music store. The two speakers were the orange seal JBL D-120F type. It was a glorious sounding amp. The steel I was playing at the time was a Sho-Bud Fingertip tuning type, the "lightening bolt" sunburst color.
The guitar player, Johnny Patterson, was the only non-Nashville recording musician on the album. I had Wally Cochran, RCA promotion manager, call the Dallas musicians union and get us an electric player. Johnny was superb, and did a fine job under such unique circumstances and one where he didn't get much playing room. But he sure made his moments count, especially on "Six Days On The Road".
This album has been issued twice in cd format. The first was on RCA, the second a few years later, on Koch Records.
To this day, of the countless records I've recorded, this remains my favorite of all time. And while everything on the album was spontaneous I wouldn't, even today, change a single note. It was a moment that forever changed the way I thought about playing the steel and my approach to recording.
Besides, it probably didn't hurt that I drank two Coors (my limit then and now) just as we started the show. Bob Knight my friend and a forumite got them for me.

And on the topic of the "humming" on "Six Days on The Road"...


The "Live At Panther Hall" album was recorded on a 4-track tape machine at Fort Worth,Texas on Saturday, June 15, 1968. The sound configuration is not as we were positioned on stage; I was seated stage right, then Jr. Huskey (bass), Chip Young (rhythm guitar), Jerry Carrigan (Drums) ? (electric guitar) and stage far left David Briggs (piano). I had one track, Charley Pride had one and the rest of the band was split among the other two. On "Six Days On The Road" Felton Jarvis, Elvis Presley's producer, who was with us representing RCA Records, simply walked to the left side of the stage where the piano mike sat and started humming off key, thinking it was cute. Needless to say there was some drinking going on that night.

When Jack Clement, the producer of Charley's records, started remixing later there
was no way to expel that "Noise" without eliminating the song, and decided to
leave it as it was. Obviously this is a flaw on an otherwise magical record.

Interestingly, there exists another 90 minutes of recorded music from that night which is falling apart somewhere in RCA's vaults, most of it as good as what eventually was released. I, and others who know of it's existence, have tried to get RCA and Jack Clements to edit the rest of the music and release it as a "Panther Hall 2". Nobody seems interested so it will probably never surface. I sure would like to hear the rest of what Charley sang and I played that night. I was really "in the zone"!

For the record, I played my double-neck, finger tip Sho-Bud through a Fender twin with
2 12" D-120F speakers. No effects, no gimmicks, just pure steel guitar. That keeps one honest and keenly aware of what you are doing.

He also made these comments on his recording career with Pride:

From the very first record Charley Pride recorded in Nashville, "The Snakes Crawl At Night", recorded in 1966 - which incidentally didn't chart in Billboard- until the final record I cut with him, "We Could", which went to #3 in Billboard in 1974, a period of 8 years, I can think of only one song that I didn't play on, at least hit songs, "Kiss An Angel Good Morning".
Gene O'Neal, who was Charley's road steel player did indeed play on this one. During those wonderful years, 1966-1974, the greatest C. Pride era, I played on 23 Billboard charted songs with Charley, including 12 #1 records. The only exception during that time was the one Gene played steel on.
Now, there may have been a "road" album or two that featured all of Charleys road band (for sale at his shows) which would have had Gene playing, but I am unaware of them, if so.
By the time I quit doing Charlie Pride's sessions his biggest and brightest years as a major artist were past. Like all artists he had but a limited number of years where he was a phenomena in country music then the focus shifted to others. It's the cruel nature of the business since he still today travels and performs. But it's not the same thing.
I hope you understand I'm merely giving you a statement of facts, not being critical of Gene O'Neal. He was a good friend of mine and a superb steel guitarist. Had he been on more of those early Charlie Pride records instead of me I'm certain they would have been good. After all, "Kiss An Angel Good Morning" was the career song for Charley Pride!
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Jeff Evans


From:
Cowtown and The Bill Cox Outfit
Post  Posted 8 Sep 2009 10:14 am    
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Tim You have good taste in music. Thanks for compiling this and bringing it (back, in some cases) to our attention.

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Tommy Shown

 

From:
Denham Springs, La.
Post  Posted 8 Sep 2009 3:06 pm    
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I had that on 8 track. YES 8 TRACK. It was a great album. I got the cd version of that for my daughter one year for Christmas. She loves it.
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basilh


From:
United Kingdom
Post  Posted 8 Sep 2009 3:41 pm    
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Quad 8 ?
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J Fletcher

 

From:
London,Ont,Canada
Post  Posted 9 Sep 2009 4:18 am    
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Thanks for posting the Lloyd Green comments, I love it!
I'm embarassed to say that I thought the humming on "Six days..." was Mr Green, imitating a police siren...Jerry
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Ken Byng


From:
Southampton, England
Post  Posted 9 Sep 2009 4:20 am    
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That album was the catalyst for many players being inspired to take up the instrument. The tone and delivery stand up today after all these years. Lloyd is right to be proud of that session. It is a classic recording.
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Bent Romnes


From:
London,Ontario, Canada
Post  Posted 9 Sep 2009 6:26 am    
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J Fletcher wrote:
Thanks for posting the Lloyd Green comments, I love it!
I'm embarassed to say that I thought the humming on "Six days..." was Mr Green, imitating a police siren...Jerry


Jerry...those were my thoughts also..right up to today I have always thought it was Lloyd. I am sure that exact sound could be replicated on steel quite easily.
The only difference is that I am not embarrassed about it Smile
Off key humming here, off key train whistles in OBS etc etc..what's the difference? It sounds great exactly as performed.
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Tommy Shown

 

From:
Denham Springs, La.
Post  Posted 9 Sep 2009 3:27 pm    
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basilh wrote:
Quad 8 ?

No Basil, 8 track. I was a cartridge type that was popular back in the 60's. When records were made out of vinyl, yes Basil. Vinyl.
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basilh


From:
United Kingdom
Post  Posted 9 Sep 2009 11:22 pm    
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Not only do I remember Vinyl, but Shellac !

As for my quad 8 comment, being as I once owned the major tape duplication plant in Ireland and produced tapes for the top labels, my reference to quad 8 WAS about 8 track, the QUADRAPHONIC ones.
The crux being that quad 8 was very popular in the seventies in Europe and the Panther hall album, (Being recorded on just a 4 track machine) would not have been mastered for quad 8 or indeed the vinyl versions of 'Quadraphonic'.

I am most gratefull for vinyl as for why, see THIS
and THIS
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Chuck Stowe


From:
Sycamore, Illinois, USA
Post  Posted 10 Sep 2009 7:56 pm    
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Is this album available anywhere? Either LP or digital. The only place I could find it is in some ebay stores starting at $75. I'd really like to hear this, but not at that price. Anyone have suggestions?

Thanks

Chuck
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Jeff Evans


From:
Cowtown and The Bill Cox Outfit
Post  Posted 10 Sep 2009 8:03 pm    
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Very worthy samples here. Might be better than nothing until you get the entire record.
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Bent Romnes


From:
London,Ontario, Canada
Post  Posted 11 Sep 2009 12:08 pm    
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Jeff, very worthy indeed. Nice and clear!
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Harry Johansen


From:
Kvalsund.Norway/Valencia Dumaguete,Phils.
Post  Posted 2 Oct 2009 4:30 am    
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I got that lp in vinyl.Wish i have equippments I could transfer to Cd.
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Billy Carr

 

From:
Seminary, Mississippi USA
Post  Posted 2 Oct 2009 7:16 am     Lg
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I remember this album very well. It was one of my favorites for years. Lloyd Green playing pure steel guitar. Great album. I didn't realize it was in 68' though.
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Colin Mclean


From:
Rancho Santa Margarita, CA
Post  Posted 2 Oct 2009 8:31 am    
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It's for sale on Ebay here, buy it now for $14.95.

I woulda bought it but my record player's in storage, besides this thread is the first I've heard of it so I'll let someone who knows and loves and has already been searching for it have it.

I'll keep my eyes open for when they put it out on Blu-Ray. Laughing
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John Steele

 

From:
Renfrew, Ontario, Canada
Post  Posted 2 Oct 2009 9:30 am    
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Interesting clarification about the humming on "Six Days On The Road".
I'd like to line that guy up beside the twit who felt he had to sing all the way through "Take Me As I Am" on Hal & Buddy's "Bell Cove" video, and pour a bucket of water over both their heads.

- John
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Johnny Thomasson

 

From:
Texas, USA
Post  Posted 2 Oct 2009 11:19 am    
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Great historical info there, thanks for posting it. A few thoughts:

1. I'd bet the Dallas store where the Twin was rented was Arnold and Morgan. They're no longer in business, but were the "go-to" guys around here at the time. That's where I got my '65 Twin, around 1977. I just wish I'd bought it outright and kept the '70 Twin I traded in on it... Sad

2. I sure would like to know where that Twin ended up. I 'spect it would be worth more than a few bucks today. I wonder if anybody knows? I remember reading somewhere Lloyd saying that later on, he really regretted not buying it.

3. Given the going prices on CD releases of this album, one would think enough sales would be generated to warrant another release. Not that every household in America would run out and buy one, but the demand seems to be there, otherwise used copies wouldn't be fetching $70 and up.

4. Another 90 minutes was taped of this show, never released, lurking in RCA's vault somewhere??? Holy cow!!! See #2 above.

Great info on this classic album. Again, thanks for posting it. To my taste, this is the tone and the style that defines steel guitar. Lloyd Green, a Sho~Bud, and a Twin Reverb with JBLs is a pretty hard combination to beat!
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joe long

 

From:
San Antonio, Texas
Post  Posted 2 Oct 2009 1:36 pm    
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Seems to me there are enough steel players all over the World who purchase the remaing 90 minutes of that show. I know that I would. Its a shame and a great loss for everyone who enjoy great music.
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Bob Knight


From:
Bowling Green KY
Post  Posted 2 Oct 2009 1:54 pm     Amp
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Quote:
1. I'd bet the Dallas store where the Twin was rented was Arnold and Morgan. They're no longer in business, but were the "go-to" guys around here at the time. That's where I got my '65 Twin, around 1977. I just wish I'd bought it outright and kept the '70 Twin I traded in on it...


The amp actually was from McCord Music in Dallas. Cool
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Chris LeDrew


From:
Canada
Post  Posted 2 Oct 2009 10:03 pm    
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Bob knows.....he provided Lloyd with those two Coors Light that loosened him up for the performance of a lifetime. Cool
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Bob Knight


From:
Bowling Green KY
Post  Posted 2 Oct 2009 10:22 pm    
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Regular Coors, Chris. Coors Light had not been "invented" at that time. Smile Smile
Lloyd still prefers Coors "YELLOW" Laughing


Last edited by Bob Knight on 12 Nov 2010 3:58 am; edited 1 time in total
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Chris LeDrew


From:
Canada
Post  Posted 2 Oct 2009 10:39 pm    
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Classic.
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Joe Casey


From:
Weeki Wachee .Springs FL (population.9)
Post  Posted 3 Oct 2009 6:29 am    
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The Man has great taste...In Beer as well as music.. Laughing
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Johnny Thomasson

 

From:
Texas, USA
Post  Posted 3 Oct 2009 6:51 am    
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OK Bob, it sounds like you know a lot more than you're telling. Give it up, man. Smile Smile

How ya doing, Bob? The Session 400 sounds like a million bucks.
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Tommy Gibbons


Post  Posted 4 Oct 2009 3:53 pm     I remenber the first time...
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When major events happen, you will remember them. I remember the exact time and location I heard the Panther Hall "8 track". It was June 1971 at a little farming town ball field in NW Tennessee. I was 14 years old. When Lloyd played, everything stood still, that was my first steel guitar experience!

Funny that I remember that, ain't it?

Tommy
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