Music

Last Three Songs

Today’s post was written by Paul.

wilson brothers

Today I’m sharing the last three songs from the Derwin Chastain VHS of the Wilson Brothers back in the 1980’s.

The first song is a Jerry Wilson (Pap) original. I recently recorded that original song with help from some musicians from other countries. I’m trying to work out some kinks in the file conversions before I share my version of the song.

The second one is a hymn they later recorded for Cloudland Records in the early ’90’s.

The last fun tune was done for the entertainment of Ray’s grandchildren who were watching from just out of frame. At the end of that song, you can see both Pap and Ray look over at them for their reaction. Adults liked this arrangement too, and Pap and Ray often performed it in churches. I was along on many of those trips, and I remember that Ray often introduced the song by comparing it to pedaling a bicycle downhill where he was in charge of one pedal and Pap was responsible for the other pedal. He said that if either one of them missed a turn of their pedal, the bike was going to wreck. 🙂 As some may remember, once upon a time, if your feet came off the pedals on a bike traveling at speed, the pedals would continue spinning or turning, making it hard to regain control of the pedals again. Somewhere along the line, the gear mechanism on bicycles was improved so that pedals just stopped turning once the rider’s feet came off. Anyway, I thought that was a funny and fitting analogy.

I hope you enjoy this last offering from that VHS recording. I did some processing of the audio to boost the volume and remove some hiss. I hope YouTube’s own processing doesn’t fight with what I did and cause the audio to distort or surge up and down. Some problems with the sound cannot be fixed. The volume on Careless Soul is good overall, but at the song’s two natural peak points (“for your life” and “unprepared to meet thy God”) are smothered down a little by the automatic gain control. It’s like the camera couldn’t handle both voices at the same time in those places.

Though the tempo of the songs is a little slow and the video and audio quality overall leaves a lot to be desired, I think the harmony of the two voices on all three songs is very solid. That’s what the music of the Wilson Brothers was all about, God and harmony. It was that harmony that earned them the NC Folk Heritage Award from the NC Arts Council in 1998.

Paul

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6 Comments

  • Reply
    Paula Rhodarmer
    March 1, 2021 at 10:58 am

    That was beautiful! Such good men.

  • Reply
    Ray Presley
    February 28, 2021 at 9:50 pm

    Hearing your Pap, Paul and Ray picking and singing is a perfect feast. Their music simply enters my soul and makes joyful sounds. Thank you

  • Reply
    dee
    February 28, 2021 at 12:02 pm

    I enjoyed, as usual, Ray and Pap’s singing! And it was precious seeing Pap look over at the children with a smile on his face. Then just a flash picture of the children standing in front of them. Most people who have been to church know the words by heart to “This Little Light of Mine” because they’ve been singing it from Sunday School, Vacation Bible School, and their church worship service. Thanks for the beautiful music to start a rainy day in the South.

  • Reply
    Randy
    February 28, 2021 at 8:39 am

    I enjoy these videos. I often spend time on you tube searching for songs by the BP&A. My father in law played music and had a little band that liked to play at churches and especially the nursing homes. I have heard him talk about the Wilson Brothers and how much he liked them. The last song, This Little Light Of Mine, brings back memories of my childhood. Our preacher at the time had a children’s choir, we would sing this song along with Jesus Loves Me quite often . He would have us act out some of the song with our hands. Please keep these videos coming.

    I have told Tipper this before, but Pap and Ray reminds my wife of her father and another man that played with him so much that she will start crying when watching these videos.

  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    February 28, 2021 at 7:52 am

    Thanks Paul, that was great! They were wonderful together. Incredible harmony!
    Since I had the pleasure of knowing Pap I can add he was a fine man, and you are a lot like him!

  • Reply
    Dona DiBernardo Silver
    February 28, 2021 at 6:52 am

    Good morning Tipper
    As I lay here in the dark on this chilly wet Long Island morning I decided to listen to Pap and Ray singing.
    No bad audio or VHS recording could ever ruin the pure god given talent that filled my room.
    The harmonizing and tone of the voices were magical to my ear.
    I am not a musician, I never played an instrument and some may say I am no authority on singing snd music.
    But I will say I certainly am when it comes to my ears and what sounds are simply beautiful. I just heard perfection. Pure god given talent that could stand up to any so called artist out there today with their fake equipment that enhances vocals that are barely tolerable at best and music that is formed by a flip of a switch. The award Ray and Pap won was well deserved !
    And to top it all off we see two men who take the time to acknowledge children standing in the wings most likely biting their nails from excitement.
    What I seen on the faces of Pap and Ray in that split second was love. What a gift for these children. There are millions in the world who would give anything for the love of a Daddy or Uncle.
    I thank god everyday for the love that surrounded our family as well.
    What a beautiful way to start a chilly Sunday morning.
    Dona

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