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The Downhomers

The Downhomers — sometimes spelled “Straight down Homers” or “Down-Homers” — were an Indiana-based country & western group founded in the first to mid-’40s, who had been notable for just two members: yodelling lead singer Kenny Roberts and his successor, Costs Haley. Based for a while in Fort Wayne, IN, the group’s account included Roberts on vocals and acoustic guitar, Bob Mason on vocals and tempo guitar, Shorty Make on steel acoustic guitar, Lloyd Cornell on dual bass, and Man Campbell playing violin. Their main influence and way to obtain motivation was the Sons from the Pioneers, plus they could sing and play up a surprise, between Campbell and Make and Roberts’ yodeling, as well as the tranquility singing of others. The group was employed by WOWO in Fort Wayne in 1944 to accomplish a daily display, and performed on Saturday evenings within the Hoosier Hop Barn Dance, which went on the NBC radio network. Roberts remaining the lineup in Oct of 1944, the month he flipped 18 and was drafted, and was absent for 13 weeks. By that point, the group have been authorized to the American Vogue label, possessed by Tom Saffady (without link with the French organization of this name), which documented them performing five tunes. Their association with Vogue led to the discharge of a set of 78 rpm singles that offered the group a particular place in the annals of record collecting, due to the label’s uncommon discography — Vogue experienced developed an activity in the middle-’40s for pressing 78 rpm platters with high-quality color pictures, as well as the Downhomers’ two singles had been both picture-discs that eerily expected the related short-lived collector’s trend of the past due ’70s on 12″ vinyl fabric. Five weeks after rejoining the music group, Roberts remaining, in Apr of 1946, where period the group experienced moved north for the gig on WTIC in Hartford, CT. It had been around this period that Costs Haley, an aspiring nation and cowboy vocalist from Chester, PA, who was simply working with the number Drifters — and who acquired also appeared in the Hoosier Hop — was brought in to the Downhomers lineup. Haley’s tenure using the group was fairly brief, significantly less than eight a few months. According for some accounts, Haley was terminated for endeavoring to break the group up and consider a few of his bandmates right into a brand-new version of the number Drifters, and no matter the situations, by November he was eliminated; he also apparently had taken Cornell and Mason with him right into a brand-new version of the number Drifters, as the Downhomers had been still left using a lineup of Make, Campbell, Slim Cox, Rusty Rogers, and Hank Gunder. They lasted in to the end from the ’40s, with one stage, Haley even attempted to rejoin when his very own group’s fortunes dry out. It’s principally due to Haley’s existence in the group through the springtime and summer months of 1946, and his following fame in the middle-’50s onward, the fact that Downhomers four formal recordings, and a brace of transcription and demonstration discs that feature him, possess enticed rather outsized curiosity from musicologists and critics, and a considerably bigger group of fans than anything the group itself ever appreciated at that time. Lately, these sides show through to the 2006 Keep Family Costs Haley collection THE TRUE Birth of Rock and roll N Move Arrives: 1946-1954.

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