The Jim Dandy label story:
Memories of photos and records
Memories of photos and records
|Jim Dandy advertising in "The Colonnade" |
(Milledgeville, Georgia), December 7, 1957
The Jim Dandy record label originated from the small Jim Dandy recording studio, which was located in the Jim Dandy Film Service in Newberry, South Carolina. The film service was opened by James Broy "Jim" Price (born in 1918) and his wife Rita in 1957. By the late 1950s, Price also built a small recording studio within the film service and in 1961, set up the Jim Dandy record label. Its first release was the Elvis inspired "Destiny and Desire" / "Please Be Fair" by Fred Thompson that same year.
In December 1961, Billboard reported that Jim Dandy "offers jockey samples on its two new releases," which were by Melvin Morris with "Charlie's Got a Horn" / "Remember You're Mine" (Jim Dandy #1004) and Jim Stocks with "Knock on Another Door" / "Shadows" (Jim Dandy #1005). Further, Billboard explained that Price was always looking for new artists and songwriters.
Most of the releases were by local artists, including Eddie Kirkley and the duo Buck & Tommy. Songwriter Bill Trader, well-known for penning the hit "(Now and Then) There's a Fool Such As I", recorded an album of his own compositions on Jim Dandy. Trader was born on May 1, 1922, and hit big in 1952 with "(Now and Then) There's a Fool Such As I." It became a hit when Hank Snow recorded it and was later successfully covered by Elvis Presley, Jo Stafford, and Petula Clark. In 1962, Trader and his band, the Castaways, recorded an album of his own compositions. The songs "Cherokee Call" and "Bitter Harvest" from that album were also released on 45rmp.
Another act that recorded for Price was the duo Buck Jones and Tommy Hagen. They were from Wilson, North Carolina, and performed locally with Jimmy Capps, specializing in Louvin Brothers songs. In 1960, they had recorded their first disc for Ronald Killette's Glendale label and followed up with "A Lost Love" / "Never Love Again" for Price's Jim Dandy label (Jim Dandy #1007). The songs were in the Louvin style, which is no suprise since their lead guitarist Jimmy Capps was playing with the Louvins since 1959. Another disc by Buck and Tommy was rushed out by Price in 1962, comprising "Forever" and "Where Shattered Memories Are" (Jim Dandy #1008). Hagen joined up with Charlie Louvin about eight months after the Louvin Brothers split up in 1963. He played mandolin and sang the high harmony parts that Ira used to provide. Buck Jones remained in the Wilson area, recording some more 45s for Tiki Records, working on radio and television as well as running his own nightclub that closed in 2015.
In 1962, Bill Haney and the Dixie Buddies had at least two releases on Jim Dandy. While "Oh! How I Cry" (Jim Dandy JD-1012) was a bluegrass song, his version of the "Crawdad Song" on Jim Dandy JD-1013 is a country outing with rock'n'roll elements. Haney was born in Haywood County, North Carolina and in 1957, he was part of Curtis Lee and the Dixie Buddies, with whom he appeared on the WRVA New Dominion Barn Dance out of Richmond, Virginia. His first record was made for the Atlanta based Super label. He toured the east coast in the 1950s and 1960s, playing country, bluegrass, and rock'n'roll, and also recorded for Dee-Dee and JFI. In the 1980s, he performed locally with a band called the "Zassoff Boys" and also recorded an album with this group.
Jim Price closed down his Jim Dandy business in the early 1960s. In 1968, his wife Rita died but he remarried in 1971 and moved to Clinton, South Carolina, where Jim Price died in 1989. He was buried at the Newberry Memorial Gardens next to his first wife.
JD4501: Fred Thompson - Please Be Fair / Destiny and Desire (1961)
JD-1002: Saxons - You Are the One / The Power of Love (1961)
JD-1002: Judy Wright with Musical Accp. - Stop / The City of Despair (1961)
JD-1004: Melvin Morris - Charlie's Got a Horn / Remember You're Mine (1961)
JD-1005: Jim Stocks - Knock on Another Door / Shadows (1961)
JD-1006: Jim Hardin - It's a Shame / Blue Eyes
JD-1007: Buck & Tommy - A Lost Love / Never Love Again
JD-1008: Buck & Tommy - Forever / Where Shattered Memories Are
JD-1009: Eddy Kirkley - I'll Keep Telling Myself / Ole' Blues (1962)
JD-1012: Bill Haney - Oh! How I Cry / 27 Strings (1962)
JD-1013: Bill Haney & the Dixie Buddies - Crawdad Song / Lookout, I See a Heartbreak (1962)
JD-1014: Castaways - Caravan / Carol's Theme
JD-1015: Ideals Combo - Lift-Off / Double Shot
JD-45-962: Bill Trader and the Castaways - Cherokee Call / Bitter Harvest
Note: The number JD-1002 was apparently used twice.
EP 101: Lulu Belle & Scotty - Tenderly He Watches Over Me / When They Ring the Golden Bells / Have I Told You Lately That I Love You / Spanish Fandango
EP 102: Arthur Smith and the Crossroads Quartet - Deliverance Will Come / Will the Circle Be Unbroken / Amazing Grace / Beyond the Sunset / The Ninety and Nine / Whispering Hope
JD-LP-963: Bill Trader & the Castaways - Bill Trader Sings his Songs
Sources: Billboard, RCS, Country & Western blog, eBay, Bill Haney's website, Jerry Kendall, Bob, Kay Bank Custom Pressings, Mr. TeenSwe, Lightnin', Hayne Davis, Safran's Antiques, The Directory of American 45 RPM Records (by Ken Clee)