I was recently listening back through some old Carter Family tapes and records I've not heard for several years. One of the things I seemed to notice was that when all three -- A.P., Sarah, and MayBelle -- sing together, they get that flat, sort of monotonous sound which seemed to characterize their style. But when MayBelle does the odd solo, her voice soars up and becomes more melodic. I also notice this in later years, when she sings with her daughters.
I wonder if, when singing with A.P., she had to go down to a key suitable for harmonizing with his voice, and sing in a range that perhaps wasn't the best placement for hers ? Anybody know about this ?