Too Late

Picking and grinning

For this week’s Pickin’ & Grinnin’ In The Kitchen Spot I wanted to share the details of an old song with you-a song I’ve heard Pap sing my entire life. We taped it back in February-and finally today I decided to use it.

I couldn’t remember who sang it first-The Louvin Brothers? Jim and Jesse? Cowboy Copas? I Googled everything I could think of but came up with nothing. I tried calling Paul-who I swear is a walking encyclopedia of old music-but he’s gone to a meeting. Next I try Pap, however, he’s having one of those senior moments and is drawing a complete blank about the song-he can tell me all the words and even sing it to me over the phone-but can’t think of who sang it or wrote it-he can’t even remember when he first heard it!

The answers to all my questions will probably come to Pap sometime in the middle of the night-but it’s “Too Late” and I’m going to bed. So enjoy the outstanding harmony-the mighty fine flat top picking-and if you know who wrote the song please tell me.

Did you enjoy the 2 part harmony? The picking? Do you know who wrote it? Who sang it?


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  • Reply
    Amy - parkcitygirl
    September 16, 2009 at 11:29 am

    I love this one! Looks like you found all the answers 🙂 The harmonies are great!

  • Reply
    September 12, 2009 at 5:41 pm

    Hey Tip,
    Thanks for posting this. And thanks to everyone for their wonderful comments and compliments. Tip, I’m sorry you couldn’t get a hold of me when you needed to ask me. I’ve heard this song sung by the Louvins and later by Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver. Just a few minutes ago, thanks to Kat, I listened to Jim Wakely do a beautiful job. Of course, like you, the first I ever heard it was when Pap sang while we little. I remember that as a kid, I thought the song was so sad but I couldn’t quite understand what had happened that had made it “too late.”
    A few years ago, I was trying to find the lyrics to a song called “Tomorrow’s Just Another Day to Cry,” a fragment that Pap remembered from his youth–and one that I hope we can post our version of on Youtube one of these days. Anyway, I found that the song was written and sung by a man named Hugh X. Lewis, not to be confused with Hewy Lewis & the News 🙂
    Mr. Lewis, who I think may still be alive, was a singer and performer in West Virginia. He was one of those folks with tons of talent that just never quite could break through and become a Nashville star. Although I’ve never heard him sing “Too Late,” I believe he wrote it. It was mentioned in a bio-sketch that I found on him. This seems to be supported by the link that Patty found. Plus, there are noticeable similarities between the lyrics and melodies of both songs (“Too Late” and “Tomorrow’s Just Another Day”). I think Lewis eventually started singing all Gospel music, but I’m not sure about that either. Jimmy Wakely’s career definitely goes back into the 40’s, but the recording on YouTube is probably from the 60’s since it’s in stereo. Well, that was probably more information than you wanted to know! 🙂

  • Reply
    fishing guy
    September 12, 2009 at 2:37 pm

    Tipper: That is a really neat song and the harmony was wonderful.

  • Reply
    September 12, 2009 at 9:27 am

    I’ve not heard it before. But you know I always love listening to Pap and Paul sing!

  • Reply
    September 12, 2009 at 7:02 am

    I enjoyed that. I enjoy being swept along to another part of our country when I read your posts.

  • Reply
    September 12, 2009 at 1:27 am

    I really liked that but, sorry I don’t know who actually wrote it.

  • Reply
    September 12, 2009 at 12:05 am

    I can’t help you on that but again I loved hearing Pap and Paul. Hope you have a wonderful weekend.

  • Reply
    September 11, 2009 at 11:10 pm

    I really enjoyed the harmony. Family voices usually blend well. My brothers had a great sound when they sang together.
    The song is pretty and I’ve heard it before, but couldn’t remember who sang it originally.

  • Reply
    September 11, 2009 at 10:58 pm

    Oh, I love it! Those voices are just golden! The lyrics are great too… yet another addition to my favorites… seems like Paul and Pap’s are all my favs!

  • Reply
    September 11, 2009 at 6:49 pm

    Thanks Matthew!
    Blind Pig & The Acorn
    Music, Giveaways, Mountain Folk
    All at

  • Reply
    September 11, 2009 at 6:44 pm

    Thanks Kat! Anyone else want to hear the original version? Here’s the link
    Blind Pig & The Acorn
    Music, Giveaways, Mountain Folk
    All at

  • Reply
    julie curtis
    September 11, 2009 at 6:11 pm

    First time I’ve ever heard it.

  • Reply
    My Carolina Kitchen
    September 11, 2009 at 4:39 pm

    I always enjoy hearing your music. How frustrating to find something that refuses to be found. We are spoiled by Google, but it doesn’t have much past the beginning of the internet.

  • Reply
    Kat Billings
    September 11, 2009 at 3:42 pm

    Jimmy Wakely sung it. You can hear him perform it on U-tube.Enjoyed Pap & Paul’s harmony on it.

  • Reply
    Patty Hall
    September 11, 2009 at 2:27 pm
    did a quick search using one of the lines of the song.
    I never heard this or the singer. always enjoy hearing your music

  • Reply
    Matthew Burns
    September 11, 2009 at 12:58 pm

    I’ve always known Ray Price to sing this song, but I believe it was written and first recorded by the late-1940’s tv singing cowboy star, Jimmy Wakely.
    That might help point you in the right direction.

  • Reply
    Brenda Kay Ledford
    September 11, 2009 at 12:51 pm

    I love this old song, but don’t remember who wrote it. Mountain bluegrass music just touches my heart and soul, especially the old-timey music. Have a great weekend.

  • Reply
    petra michelle
    September 11, 2009 at 11:38 am

    I wish I knew, Tipper! A lovely song it is, and, of course, Pap and Paul continuously add their magic!
    Wishing you all a wonderful weekend, Tipper! :))

  • Reply
    September 11, 2009 at 8:36 am

    What a wonderful video legacy!!

  • Reply
    September 11, 2009 at 8:12 am

    I loved it. The long sleeves made me think there is a chill in the air. I was also thinking was a treasure you are preserving by recording your Pap.

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