Wednesday, 19 December 2012

Box Full of Git

Back in the late 70’s/early 80’s I was buying a few records from Craig Moerer from the USA. He was a cool guy that sent me a cassette tape of 30 second segments of records he thought might be of interest to me. I bought a few 45’s from him over a period of time (until I got married and had other stuff to spend my money on). One of the tunes on that cassette was an instrumental called ‘Box Full of Git’ by Jimmy Fautheree. The flip side was a re-recording of ‘Can’t Find the Door Nob’ (it’s spelt Nob on the label). The B side is just Jimmy singing without the harmonies of the original, it works well, in fact this was the first version I’d heard of the song. When I finally got to hear the original I was equally impressed.

A wee bit of info on Jimmy;

Born James Walton Fautheree, 11 April 1934, Smackover, Arkansas, Died 29 June 2004, Dallas, Texas.

When Jimmy was 12 his aunt bought him a guitar which he soon mastered and at the age of 16, he debuted on "The Big 'D' Jamboree" in Dallas and made an impression with his hot guitar playing.

He was signed to Capitol Records in 1951, where he was renamed Jimmy Lee.
In 1953 he teamed up with "Country" Johnny Mathis. They were billed as Jimmy and Johnny on the Louisiana Hayride, and were managed by Tillman Franks.
In the autumn of 1954, the duo crept into the Country Top 10 with "If You Don't, Somebody Else Will" (Chess 4859).
However, the pair soon broke up and Jimmy formed a new partnership with Wayne Walker, this duo didn't last more than a few months, thankfully they did record "Love Me" (Chess 4863), cut in January 1955 in Shreveport, before going their separate ways
Jimmy then teamed up with his brother Lynn ( the new "Johnny").
Together they recorded some classic rockabilly sides for Decca, including "Sweet Love on My Mind", which they recorded on July 25, 1956, a few weeks after the version by the Johnny Burnette Rock n Roll Trio.
The brothers moved to Nashville while they were under contract to Decca, but returned to East Texas when that contract ended in 1957.
The next few years found Jimmy Lee reuniting with Johnny Mathis, though both men also made solo records during this time.
In 1958, Jimmy recorded (As Johnny Angel) the excellent, "Baby It's Love"/"Teenage Wedding" (Vin 1004), he was backed by Cosimo Matassa's studio band.  A second Vin single, "Look What Love Will Do", was released under his own name.
In 1958 they released another rockabilly classic, "I Can't Find the Doorknob", on Pappy Daily's D label. There were further Jimmy & Johnny releases on D and Republic, but sales were poor so Jimmy eventually moved out to Farmington, New Mexico, to join in the family asbestos installation business.
In the sixties, Jimmy recorded as Jimmy Fautheree for small labels like Paula, Lodema and Town House. Later he turned to gospel.
Not long before his death, Fautheree's rockabilly career was revived. He performed at the Rockabilly Rave in Rye, Sussex, England, in March 2004 (his first-ever gig in Europe).
He was backed by Deke Dickerson and his band, the Ecco-Fonics (with a young Eddie Clendening on rhythm guitar).
The Ecco-Fonics recorded a CD with Jimmy in 2003. Howard Cockburn wrote in Now Dig This (issue 253, April 2004): "What a truly wonderful set! Ten out of ten in all departments, HIGHLY RECOMMENDED”.
During the Rockabilly Rave, Jimmy was already in advanced stages of cancer. After his condition worsened, he had to cancel appearances at Viva Las Vegas and the Ponderosa Stomp. He died on June 29, 2004, at the age of 70.

Jimmy Lee solo recordings 
Capitol 1509    Love Is Hard To Understand/I Keep The Blues All The Time
Capitol 1709    Go Ahead And Go/Knocking On Your Front Door (Pounding On Your Back)
Capitol 1924    Lips That Kiss so Sweetly/I've Got A Broken Heart
Capitol 2051    Suspense/Warm Warm Kisses
Capitol 2153    53 I'm Diggin' a Hole to Bury My Heart/Kisses By Mail
Capitol 2320    Blowin' And Goin'/Mistakes
Capitol 2491    How About A Date/Cryin' Won't Change My Mind
Jimmie Lee & (Country) Johnny Mathis
Feature 1092   53 If You Don't, Somebody Else Will/I'm Beginning To Remember
Capitol 3012    54 Don’t Forget To Remember (J & J)/Open For Trade(Jimmy Lee)
Chess 4859      54 I’m Beginning To Remember/If You Don't, Somebody Else Will
Chess 4862      54 Can't You, Won't You/The Fun Is Over
Decca 29772    56 Sweet Singing Daddy/Trust Me
Decca 29954    56 Till the End of The World/Another Man's Name
Decca 30061    56 Sweet Love On My Mind/Imagination
Decca 30278    Here Comes My Baby/Don't Give Me That Look
Decca 30410    57 Whatcha Doin' To Me/I'll Do It Every Time
Sparton 4-613  58  I Can't Find The Doorknob/Keep Telling Me (Canadian pressing)
D 1004              58 I Can't Find the Doorknob/Keep Telling Me
D 1089              59 My Little Baby/All I Need Is Time
TNT 184            61  Don't Call Me, I'll Call You/Two Empty Arms 
Republic 2014  61 Knock On Wood/Let Me Be The One
Jimmie Lee & Wayne Walker
Chess 4863     55 Lips That Kiss So Sweetly/Love Me
Johnny Angel (Jimmy Lee Fautheree)
Vin 1004       58  Teenage Wedding/Baby It's Love
Jimmy Lee 
Vin 1010       59  Look What Love Will Do/I Ain't Worried About Tomorrow
Jimmy Fautheree
Paula 239      66  box full of "git"/can't find the door nob (spelled "nob")(re-recording)
Paula 249      Keep Me In Mind/Bells of Monterrey
Paula 279      I Didn't Know/Overdue
Lodema LR101   Project X-9 (instr.)/I'm The Laziest Man In The World
Lodema LR102   If You Want To Be Saved/Fellowship With Jesus
Lodema LR105   I just can't keep on/one day smiling
Town House THR EP101    Nobody Knows Where You Go/Please Talk To My Heart
 Recorded at Norman Petty's studios (b-side by Fran Powers: Taffy Town/Goin' Steady)
Thanks to Tapio for Jimmy’s discography.

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