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Harmony Hall of Fame

08 Oct 99 - 04:25 PM (#122149)
Subject: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: Lonesome EJ

This thread was spurred by the "Visualizing Harmony" thread, and by my recollection of great harmony singers and teams, and by great examples of classic harmony performances. I thought it might be fun to honor some of the great performers and performances of this art form in this little thread.

Most of my memories of great harmony performances came out of either Country or Bluegrass music. The Louvin Bros were the first to perform the kind of soaring harmony that was later popularized by Don and Phil Everly. Phil Everly set the bench mark for clean high harmony that influenced everyone from the Beatles to Crosby Stills and Nash, but it was based on the Louvin Bros' pioneering melodies and harmonies, as well as the Bluegrass tradition. A great example of the Everly Harmony is So Sad to Watch Good Love go Bad . In addition to Phil's on-target tenor harmony, the Everly sound was enhanced by a similarity in timbre between the voices.Maybe singers linked by family ties make the best harmony singers?

It would certainly seem the case with the Beach Boys, who achieved elaborate 4-part harmonies where the voices seemed to merge together like an instrumental chord.

Other harmonists that bear mentioning are David Crosby and Graham Nash, Emily Lou Harris, K D Laing and Sylvia Tyson.

08 Oct 99 - 04:30 PM (#122151)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: Magpie

LEEJ What about Watersons?


08 Oct 99 - 04:38 PM (#122153)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: katlaughing

Everyly Bros.: Dream

The Persuasions: went to a harmony workshop by them and a concert. Super!

Seven Bridges Road by the Eagles

Caroline & Sandy Paton

In my own Hall of Harmony Fame: My sisters, brother and parents. Yes, there is definitely something to be said for "blood harmony" a term I'd never even heard until coming to the Mudcat; didn't know that was what we had! Somebody came up to my sister, Bet, and me, last summer after a performance and complimented our singing. When I introduced her to them as my sister, they said, "No wonder your voices blended so well!" Made me feel really good.

08 Oct 99 - 08:06 PM (#122196)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: mountain tyme

Re; "Blood Harmony"
IMO At its best
The Armstrong Twins
Bill & Earl Bolick
Carter & Ralph Stanley
The DeZurik Sisters
The Gillis Brothers
The Anglin Twins
The Dixon Brothers
The Lilly Brothers
The Delmore Brothers
The Callahan Brothers
The Maddox Brothers & Rose
The Bailey Brothers
Jim & Jesse McReynolds
The Monroe Brothers
Happy research...Happy listening!

08 Oct 99 - 08:19 PM (#122198)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: Susan A-R

The Roches (Maggie, Terry and Suzzy?) That Amazing Linda Ronstadt, Emmy Lou Harris, Dolly Parton album (Was there more than one?) John Roberts and Tony Barrand, Priscilla Hardman, Ann Dodson, Cindy Mangson Ckndy Kallet, Ellen? and Paul? Peter Paul and Mary The Black Family. The Voice Squad The Nylons The Flirtations

I guess what interests me are interesting harmony lines, and the richness of voice blends. I love it when voices cross.

08 Oct 99 - 09:12 PM (#122214)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: MAG (inactive)

Sweet Honey in the Rock.

All 60's retro groups like the Nylons.

08 Oct 99 - 09:27 PM (#122219)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: folk1234

Gordon Bok, Ann Mayo Muir, and Ed Trickett. Also Cathy Barton and Dave Para.

08 Oct 99 - 10:22 PM (#122222)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: Mike Billo

The early Mills Brothers records with their imitations of wind instruments, and the Comedian Harmonists, a German group of the 20's and 30's who also imitated band instruments.

And let's not forget the Sons of the Pioneers.

08 Oct 99 - 10:22 PM (#122223)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: Rick Fielding

I Love this. Just reading some of the names gives me goosebumps. Way to go Mountain Tyme. Hard to Beat Doyle Lawson and the various Quicksilvers. How about the first time you heard John Duffy with Eddie Adcock and Charlie Waller. Guess I gotta go with Alton and Rabon Delmore though for favourites of all-time.


08 Oct 99 - 10:46 PM (#122231)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: Dale Rose

Mountain Thyme got most of mine, including my personal favorites, Bill and Earl Bolick, The Blue Sky Boys. Slight subject slip here ~~ Bill Bolick is still alive, Earl died earlier this year. Hard to believe that they were just teenagers when they did those first recordings in 1936!

I'll have to go some to even approach that list without duplications, so for now, I'll just have to add a couple of family groups of more recent vintage, Nova Scotia's The Rankin Family and The Ennis Sisters from Newfoundland. Lamentably, The Rankin Family recently called it quits ~~ I think their last concert is scheduled for early next month. Raylene, Cookie, and Heather do have a series of Christmas Concerts with Symphonies planned, so you Canadians catch them while you still can.

08 Oct 99 - 11:10 PM (#122239)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: WyoWoman

Susan--I just got the first Emmylou/Linda/Dolly "Trio" CD and am learning several songs from it. Yes, they've got a second "Trio" album, as I understand.


09 Oct 99 - 12:21 AM (#122252)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: DonMeixner

The Sons of The Pioneers

Robin and Linda Williams

Lulu Belle and Scotty

Chad and Jeremy

Peter and Gordon

The McGarrigles


09 Oct 99 - 01:00 AM (#122259)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: mountain tyme

I would just like to add/share with all of you that find tight "blood harmony" appealing, The DeZurik Sisters (sp?) sang on a radio show from the midwest I believe hosted by Eddy Arnold sponsored by Purina Feeds. The girls grew up singing while milking cows together. Their harmonies and speed can not be believed...even while listening to them. Because the show was sponsored by Purina Feeds the girls were asked to sing like chickens for the commercials and that they did. As a result, they became more widely known as "The Cackle Sisters." The kicker is, they not only sang tight and very fast, but they also yodeled in harmony at an incredible speed. One non-novelty tune I recommend as a good example is "The Arizona Cowboy". They made no recordings but dupes of transcriptions are available. They performed for only a short time before one sister married and the act broke up. I highly recommend to anyone fascinated by harmony to attempt hearing them at least once. You will never forget their never to be believed sound. Their harmony gives the word an entirely new meaning. I have a number of their recordings I am asked to play over and over to the amazement of many of my fellow music lovers. I'm a singer, not a speller and I can't find the spell check button...sorry. I do have MediaRingVoiz.

09 Oct 99 - 01:04 AM (#122261)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: Bev and Jerry

June Tabor and Maddy Prior aka The Silly Sisters but only if you like very unusual harmonies.

Bev and Jerry

09 Oct 99 - 11:12 AM (#122288)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: Mike Billo

Mountain tyme is absolutely right. There is one recording by the DeZurik sisters on an anthology called "Old-Time Country Duets" on Arhoolie, that's incredible.

In a similar vein, were Dolly and Molly Goode, the "Girls of the Golden West".

10 Oct 99 - 02:14 PM (#122501)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: emily rain

go bev and jerry! silly sisters kick some serious arse.

sally rogers and claudia schmidt also have their moments. their second joint album is a bit shakey, but the first one is very nice. a friend just yesterday reminded me of the king's singers. they have a careful, precise quality, very different from the unrestrained blood harmonies discussed above, but satisfying in its perfection.

10 Oct 99 - 02:32 PM (#122507)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: Magpie

Oh yes, Bev and Jerry,I forgot Silly Sisters. The Voice Squad is also a must in this thread.


10 Oct 99 - 02:43 PM (#122512)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: j0_77

Any oldtimey mountain singing with that random harmony.

10 Oct 99 - 07:41 PM (#122552)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: Martin _Ryan

No mention of The Persuasions? The Voice Squad, incidentally, have recently called it a day.


10 Oct 99 - 07:55 PM (#122554)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: Stewie

The DeZurik Sisters' 'Arizona Yodeler' may be heard on Various Artists 'American Yodeling 1911-1946'. As has been said above, it is an incredible performance. The CD is on the German Trikont label Trikont US-0246-2. It is a great CD, as is its companion on the same label 'Black and White Hillbilly Music'. The Arhoolie LP mentioned (Old Timey 128) is long out of print, but as indicated, the Dezurik's 'Birmingham Jail' is great. The album also has tracks by Dixon Bros, Blue Sky Boys, Delmores, Bailes Bros, Girls of the Golden West, Buchanan Brothers, Armstrong Twins, Webster Bros, and Johnny and Jack - it is well worth looking out for in secondhand shops. Unfortunately, Chris Strachwitz has made no move to reissue any of his fine Old Timey LP series on to CD, apart from some of the western swing.

Mountain tyme, I have seen the name spelled variously Dezurik and DeZurik - sometimes by the same source!

10 Oct 99 - 08:14 PM (#122562)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: Mudjack

Alene and Elkin Thomas... (spelling is wrong )Texas couple who toured several years back, hav'nt heard to much from them in recent years. (?). The Watersons from England were extremely good and MAG's choice of Sweet Honey on the Rock. Fine fine stuff. And then there is Ladysmith Black Mambazo(spelling again).
UMmmmm shaaa na-na Ummmm....

10 Oct 99 - 08:27 PM (#122568)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: MAG (inactive)

Another thred reminded me of Dolly, Linda, and Emmy Lou.

emmy Lou's voice has too much vibrato in it, for my taste, solo, but she blends great.

10 Oct 99 - 08:41 PM (#122573)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: Pete Peterson

I can't believe nhobody has mentioned the Carter Family yet; therefore I shall. Sara and Maybelle with AP joining in where-ever he felt like it-- wow! Agree with the list of brother (and sister) duets-- my friend Tim Woodbridge believed that it was the opportunity to sing together a LOT while growing up as well as heredity. I'm an only child myself but have always envied those who have harmony right within the family. PETE

10 Oct 99 - 09:46 PM (#122586)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: Stewie

In my above posting, I meant to say 'Cajun' not 'western swing' - Stratchwitz great western swing compilations still lie in limbo.

Many of my favourites have been covered, including the fine Robin and Linda Williams, but to add a few not mentioned: The Johnstons, Robin and Barry Dransfield, The Seldom Scene (particularly when John Starling was present), The Young Tradition, Jolly Jack, Red Clay Ramblers, Muckram Wakes, Regal Slip, Swan Arcade. One of my all-time favourites is the album by Ricky Skaggs and Tony Rice 'Skaggs and Rice'. Sugar Hill reissued it on CD with a lamentably short running time - perhaps that is all there ever was available, but every moment is a joy. Of course, great harmony groups abound in the black American tradition, particularly in gospel, but that is another story.

Susan, the second Trio album is indeed available. In addition, there is another new release: Linda Ronstadt and Emmylou Harris 'Western Wall' (WB). This features them as duet partners and includes Olney's '1917' and Cohen's 'Sisters of Mercy'.


10 Oct 99 - 10:28 PM (#122596)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: catspaw49

What a fine thread!!! Tyme, I'm impressed! Outside of the "blood" harmony folks, I have to put in a little plug for Robin and Linda Williams....just something about their sound....don't know ( or care ) what...They just have that mountain thing, whatever that is.

Like the thread on what attracts us to a song, some things are hard to put into words.


11 Oct 99 - 10:32 PM (#122850)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: Mudjack

Ringer/McCaslin"'s Bramble and the Rose is hard to beat.

11 Oct 99 - 10:45 PM (#122855)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: bbelle

Here's a trivia bit: The type of "close" harmony heard from siblings, i.e., Lennon Sisters, Osmond Brothers, Everly Brothers, Louvin Brothers, and all other brother or sister groups is physiological, not acquired or learned. While many other duos, trios, groups have great harmony, it is acquired or learned. There have been maybe 2 or 3 people, with whom I've sung harmony in the past 30 years, that was so close it made the hair on the back of my nect rise. It's a feeling I'll never forget and to which I'm constantly aspiring ... moonchild

11 Oct 99 - 11:05 PM (#122864)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: BK

"Joe & Eddie" from the 60's folk era. Not brothers but childhood friends & fantastic. "Clishmaclaver" & "Side By Side," both from the DC area - now split up- as well as "Sanders, Cass & White" from the 'Balmer area. As well, of course, as many already mentioned.. Like to hear some o' them recordings mentioned. Think I'll add this to my tracer list.

Cheers, BK

12 Oct 99 - 04:36 AM (#122911)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: Dale Rose

And there's Canada's should-be-world-famous Quartette, Caitlin Hanford, Cindy Church, Sylvia Tyson, and Gwen Swick. Coleen Peterson was a member of Quartette until her death in 1996 at which time Gwen Swick joined the group. Quartette Official Homepage And another good page at the Internet Cowboy Site

12 Oct 99 - 10:32 AM (#122960)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: Davey

Dale, thanks for mentioning Quartette... I second the motion. Incidentally, the Rankins are moving in more of a 'pop' direction and away from the traditional, I haven't bought their latest because the previous album did nothing for me personally.

Susan and Wyo, Parton, Ronstadt and Harris do have a Trio II album out, and it surpasses their first album IMHO..

Mudjack, I enjoy Ringer/McCaslin's 'Bramble and the Rose'.. Catch the version by Jody Stecher & Kate Brislin as well, or for that matter, any of their fine albums... They have a wonderfully traditional sound.

Also, I'd like to cast my vote for Tim and Mollie O'Brien for some chilling 'Blood Harmony'..

Folk1234, I agree with Bok, Muir & Trickett, I have nearly all their recordings.. great harmonies and wonderful choice of material...

12 Oct 99 - 11:12 AM (#122967)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: Easy Rider

How about Ladyship Black Mambazza?

12 Oct 99 - 11:13 AM (#122969)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: JR

Gotta throw in a favorite of mine... The Limeliters.

12 Oct 99 - 03:22 PM (#123075)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: Steve Latimer

Some people wil cringe at this as their harmonies weren't the cleanest, But I always thought that Levon Helm, Rick Danko, Robbie Robertson and The Band sounded wonderful together.

12 Oct 99 - 04:00 PM (#123098)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: Lonesome EJ

I agree, Steve, and The Band was a great example of the fact that Harmony doesn't have to be pretty to be effective. Their voices were very far apart in almost every way, but they blended their harmony in a way that was quite striking. In the same way, the Grateful Dead achieved some innovative harmonies on American Beauty that far surpassed their individual vocal talents, or lack thereof.

12 Oct 99 - 04:22 PM (#123110)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: lamarca

My current favorite tight harmony group is the British trio Coope, Boyes and Simpson. Jim Boyes used to be with Swan Arcade; don't know too much about Barry Coope and Lester Simpson. They have a slew of albums out on the "No Masters" label(as opposed to HMV, I suppose) that feature exquisitely tight, intricate harmonies that vary from traditional to Doo-wop depending on the piece they're singing. My two favorite albums are "Hindsight" (all traditional songs) and "Funny Old World" (mostly GOOD British singer-songwriters). Dick Swain introduced their stuff to my husband and me, and we wish we were three people so's we could sing the way they do!

13 Oct 99 - 01:38 PM (#123491)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: Frank Hamilton

I vote for The Golden Gate Quartet. Phenomenal harmony and rhythm in gospel music. "Theodora is Dozing" from the Koutev "Music of Bulgaria" recording. Then there's the tradition of "Sacred Harp" singing. Harmony singing has a lot to do with what's appropriate for the style of music. Lambert, Hendricks and Ross would not be appropriate for bluegrass or sea chanteys but their harmonies were great. Next thread should be Great Singers Hall of Fame. :)

Frank Hamilton

13 Oct 99 - 03:47 PM (#123532)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: CarterNut

The Carter Family have my vote. The way Sara and Maybelle weave their voices together. If you listen to them enough you begin to hear different little patterns in each and every song. Then I love the later recordings done by Mother Maybelle and her daughters. The way they stack their voices together, Anita's golden voice at the top of it all, Maybelle taking in the low end. That is pure heaven to me. I also particularly like Jim and Jesse McReynolds. They recorded a song not too long ago, the old Hank Williams song "Faded Love and Winter Roses", with Emmylou Harris that is just pure beauty. John J.

14 Oct 99 - 03:35 PM (#123930)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: kendall

Let's not forget Joe Val, he could sing higher than most of us can think..Herb Applin is right up there too.

14 Oct 99 - 06:56 PM (#123986)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: Davey

A group I neglected to mention earlier is the British trio, Artisan. They are almost exclusively a capella, and wonderful...

14 Oct 99 - 10:13 PM (#124061)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: KC

I agree with JR on the Limelighters, they even have a song called 'Harmony.' Also Mandella, a duo I think might be out of DC, and Schooner Fare, an trio out of Boston with great traditionally-based songs. :-)

15 Oct 99 - 11:04 AM (#124223)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: Arnie Naiman

Two of my fave harmony folksters are: Magpie -(Terry Leonino & Greg Artzner), Finest Kind (Ian Robb, Ann Downey, Shelley Posen)

15 Oct 99 - 08:08 PM (#124437)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: Roger in Baltimore

Some wonderful Harmony singers. Susan A-R noted some of my favorites. Cindy Mangsen, Priscilla Herdman, and Anne Hills occasionally tour as a trio. I first heard them at the Uptown Coffeehouse here in Balmer from the altar of a local church. It classifies as one of the magic evenings of my experience. Three fine solo singers in their own right who also seem to intuitively know harmony (some are born with it, I believe).

Marge bought me a special collectors edition of Pet Sounds by the Beach Boys. Included are several tracks from the original album that are just the vocal tracks. I have a whole new appreciation of their version of Sloop John B. Ain't folk, but it's real nice!

Roger in Baltimore

15 Oct 99 - 08:31 PM (#124441)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: T in Oklahoma (Okiemockbird)

I nominate the Early Music Consort of London and its performance of "Alle Psallite cum Luya" (13th century polyphony).


15 Oct 99 - 08:49 PM (#124451)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: D-Dave

How about Herb Pedersen who harmonised for Doc , Emmy Lou, Chris Hillman and just about everyone else.

Got to go along with Steve and EJ about the Band and their rough harmonies. Ain't no more Cain off the Basement Tapes is really fine along with all their other standards. And don't forget GD's Working Mans' Dead .


05 Jan 02 - 07:39 PM (#621713)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: Lonesome EJ

Listening to the Beach Boys' Pet Sounds reminded me of this old thread. Anyone interested in harmony singing should listen to this album. The harmonic interplay is ethereal, unorthodox, stunning. The fascinating thing is you can clearly hear the secondary harmonics generated by the primary intended harmonies. In a word, Transcendent.

05 Jan 02 - 07:52 PM (#621725)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: kendall

Schooner Faire is a trio located in Maine, not Boston. For harmony, I'd have to say Sons of the Pioneers, Trickett, Bok and Muir, The Country Gentlemen and the folks on Folk Legacy album, Five days singing.

05 Jan 02 - 07:52 PM (#621727)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame

Bob Dylan. Awesome harmony singer. Tom Waits is another one.

05 Jan 02 - 09:03 PM (#621805)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: WyoWoman

That's hilarious.

06 Jan 02 - 01:47 PM (#622206)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: Ralphie

Huge round of applause for a mench for Coope,Boyes, and Simpson from this side of the pond
Alongside the Watersons, (who occasionally share the same stage as Blue Murder)
But, who remembers Threadbare Consort??
A sort of Heavy Metal Trad acap band (4 Piece) who where around in the mid 70's...
I've got one of the few copies of their only LP....and it's mine, I tell you, all mine !!!! (Mad cackle ensues!)
One Meatball and no potatoes

06 Jan 02 - 02:57 PM (#622240)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: Jerry Rasmussen

In Gospel, go for the appropriately named Harmonizing Four as number 1, and add The Fairfield Four (who are five now, and not as good as the older stuff) and Doyle Lawson as someone mentioned, The Sensational Nightengales and the Swan Silvertones. The Golden Gate Quartet created a sound that's been endlessly imitated, as did the Soul Stirrers, although they often just seemed to be a backup group for Sam Cooke or Johnny Taylor. And another major vote for Ladysmith Black Mombazo.


06 Jan 02 - 03:08 PM (#622246)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: John Hardly

Nashville Blugrass Band is my favorite

Glad to see that stewie gave a nod to the Rice/Skaggs CD-----there are few any better.

IIIrd Time Out have carried on the Doyle Lawso/Quicksilver tradition.

And I'll add myself to the Tim and Mollie fan club

06 Jan 02 - 03:19 PM (#622255)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: Amos

I am sorry to hear the Voice Squad is breaking up. As I write I am listening, over and over, to their endition of "The Parting Glass" and every time they sing "Of all the comrades, e'er I had..." it sends shivers up my neckbone.

"I gently rise, and softly call,
Good night, and joy be to you all!"


Gawd, they're good.


06 Jan 02 - 04:44 PM (#622299)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: phil h

I'm amazed no one's mentioned 'The Wilson Family', their powerfull harmony performances have been a high spot for me at Whitby folk week in recent years. Some 'Swan arcade' material has recently been reissued, their version of 'The Kinks' 'Lola' is wonderfull. My most spine tingling harmony moment however was seeing a Bulgarian womens choir in Norwich Cathedral about ten years ago, the recordings I've heard don't match up to that live performance - incredible acoustics enhancing theunearthly harmonies. -- Phil

22 Dec 04 - 04:33 PM (#1363509)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: Lonesome EJ

refreshing this because of the current thread on Best Harmony singers

11 Feb 08 - 04:06 PM (#2259742)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: Lonesome EJ

Livin, Lovin, Losin is an album any lovers of sweet country harmonies should pick up. The album is a Louvin Bros tribute, and includes folks like Emmy Lou, James Taylor, Johnny Cash, Carl Jackson, Merle, Alison Krauss, Linda Ronstadt and others. Every song on here is a demonstration of the pure pleasure of close harmony, but several stand out. Among the best are James Taylor and Alison Krauss doing How's the World Treating You, Ronnie Dunn and Rebecca Lynn Howard on If I Could Only Win Your Love, and Larry Cordle, Carl Jackson and Jerry Salley on You're Running Wild. There are also those magic moments when the harmonies digress from the predictable and create something altogether unanticipated and beautiful, like Carl Jackson's amazing harmony line at the very end of New Partner Waltz.

It was great to re-read this old thread and hear voices of so many old friends, some who are now gone, but all, in some way, who will always be on this forum in spirit.

11 Feb 08 - 05:04 PM (#2259804)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: GUEST,TJ in San Diego

I like vocal harmony for the same reason I love a good brass choir or a string quartet, it pleases the senses with a richness and depth that one voice, however powerful, has a hard time matching. The best thing about harmony is how diverse it is. It works in every genre and on many levels, polished and unsophisticated. To echo one sentiment cited above, singing with a group - when everything comes together "right & tight" - and the audience is into it as well, the hair on the back of the neck does stand up, unless,of course, you happen to be a cadaver.

11 Feb 08 - 05:55 PM (#2259864)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: pdq

Herb Pedersen's lead voice is pretty good, but his harmony singing is as good as it gets. He and Chris Hillman have similar pitch and weight, but it's better when Chris does lead and Herb does harmony. Also see the one record wonder group "Here Today" where Herb leads the way in four and even five part singing. He was also one of Emmyou Harris and John Denver's favorite singing partners.

11 Feb 08 - 09:56 PM (#2260023)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: Severn

Hell, Pedersen in 1968 days even sang with Vern & Ray. Check out "The Touch Of God's Hand" on "San Francisco-1968" (Arhoolie 524)
for high harmony bluegrass gospel.

That song was also covered well by Dudley Connell, Don Rigsby and James King performing in their side project Longview, who have two wonderful albums on Rounder.

12 Feb 08 - 03:32 AM (#2260143)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: GUEST,Black Hawk

Surprised no-one has mentioned the Oakridge Boys, the Stanley Brothers or the Jordanaires.

Superb harmonies & their gospel tracks are spine tingling.

Blood harmony - the Bee Gees!

12 Feb 08 - 06:17 PM (#2260854)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: GUEST,TJ in San Diego

You're on the money with respect to the Oaks and other gospel groups. Elvis and many others used the Jordanaires for back up harmonies for years. Many folk groups borrowed heavily from the gospel harmony tradition as well. My home town group was the "Gospelaires Quartet," which included one of my schoolmates. Great, rich harmonies were common to all of these, though not everyone had a Richard Sturbin to carry the bass

13 Feb 08 - 01:02 PM (#2261514)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: Lady Nancy

Hey, Ralphie

I remember Threadbare Consort and have a couple of lovely black and white photos of when Squire did a harmony workshop with them at Bracknell festival around 1975/6?

Eh! Nostalgia!

Lady Nancy

14 Feb 08 - 03:57 AM (#2262022)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame

I'm sorry. Either I have been abducted by aliens and returned to the wrong universe, or I have lived too long. Has there seriously been a Folk Music thread about harmony singing running since 1999 without the names of John, Jim, Ron and Bob Copper having appeared?
And yet Peter and Gordon ....

14 Feb 08 - 12:30 PM (#2262344)
Subject: RE: Harmony Hall of Fame
From: Lonesome EJ

Well, it has been safely tuked away out of sight for the last 6 years, Guest.