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Thread: Red Allen and Frank Wakefield

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    Borrowed this CD from a friend and am trying to play along. The opening song, Lil Maggie is being played in C#. Okay, what I really think happened is they transferred it from tape to CD and the keys do not match. It's probably in D, right? Anyway, this is my first chance to listen to "The Great Frank". What does everyone else think of Frank? He is a little Monroesque, but still has his own style.

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    Registered Mandolin User mandopete's Avatar
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    One of my all time favorite recordings, great stuff!
    2015 Chevy Silverado
    2 bottles of Knob Creek bourbon
    1953 modified Kay string bass named "Bambi"

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    Goodbye doublestop. Frank is the real deal.........IMO he was really something in those days.........more out there now, less like Bill, more like Frank......but still a unique mandolin voice. He sounds more like he does now than he did before. Hello.

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    Frankspeakitpretty
    "If a man listening will let it, bluegrass will transmit right into your heart...if you really love bluegrass music it will dig in a long ways" #-WSM

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    My bandmates and I are really inspired by all the Red Allen stuff we can find. We started with The Kitchen Tapes, then Folkway Years, now a couple others that collect recordings from Rebel, Melodeon, and County. It's all good.

    Oh, and yeah, Frank sure is Frank. I'm still somewhere around 'intermediate' on the mandolin, so I'm soaking up what I can from whoever I can. I don't really want to play just like Frank (then or now), but I like trying to figure out what he's doing. The Kitchen Tapes is a great CD for mandolin study, for lots of reasons. It's great music, and with just Red on guitar & Frank on mando, there are loads of mandolin breaks to listen to.

    Dan




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    I know Frank pretty well, I actually take lessons from him. He's a great guy and can do things on the mandolin that no one else can do, that I've seen atleast. He's kinda like a time capsul, he's got his own repertoire (actually I remember hearing that he wrote more mandolin instrumentals than any other bluegrass mandolinist, not sure of the fact on that statement though), but also any of the old hard-core Monroe bluegrass tunes; he knows note for note just how they were written, learned from Bill personally. A very unique individual, exceptional human being, teacher and friend.
    Philip Halcomb

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    By the way doublestop, Frank often times tunes a half-step below standard, I'm note sure if they did that back in those days too... But that would explain the C# for little maggie... Enjoy...



    Philip Halcomb

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    As a matter of fact, Frank is going on tour soon.
    Here is the schedule:
    http://www.candlewater.com/WakefieldPhotoCollection/
    Anyone wanting to attend lessons on the road should
    contact me at
    FWB@Candlewater.com

    Jim Moss
    FWB

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    ..I hope to see you guys in Dayton at Canal Street Nov.12th.....

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    Can't contribute much on Red with Frank - But I do know Red Allen worked for a time with the Osborne Brothers. Bluegrass mythology says THAT(!) combination was the foundation of 3-part BG harmonies. Some of that material will "knock your hat in the creek"!!! (IMHO)... I think they recorded for the now defunct MGM label.

  12. #11

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    Red told me personally that it was while on a trip thru West Virginia that Bobby, Sonny and Red "discovered" the art of three part harmony with the high lead..I believe the song "Making Plans" was the first song they did like this. Huh Harley??




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    Bummer I have a gig in Columbus on Novemeber 12th so I will mis FWB again. ####. That makes three years in a row...

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    Scotti.. - Thank you for that anecdote.. - "..and the rest is (Bluegrass)history." That(They)set the bar. And still can - (IMHO)- Regards, Moose.




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    I have a great story, but I can't tell it.
    It happened when I was at Kenny Baker's one year
    and Blaine was there. He went over with Sonny to their
    studio for a bit.

    j

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    I can understand the possible reasons. Blaine & Kenny Baker - two GREAT fiddle players - and Sonny always ready to "ignite" something!! e-mail me offline if you would care to. [richardw@UDel.edu] - a.k.a. Moose..

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    Well, I guess I can tell you this much.
    When Blaine came back he told us that in the
    Osborne's studio there was a big poster on the
    wall with the pictures if The Osborne Brothers
    and Red Allen, however, Red's name had an old
    tape reel box taped over it. #

    I asked Sonny what was up and he told me.

    Well...
    Ralph Icebag, Over and out.




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    Well, there could be a number of reasons - all Sonny(isms) - and no doubt hilarious!!! - Thanks for the reply. (IMHO.., the material they recorded with Dale Sledd is/was some of their FINEST work) -

  19. #18

    Default Re: Red Allen and Frank Wakefield

    Quote Originally Posted by doublestop View Post
    Borrowed this CD from a friend and am trying to play along. The opening song, Lil Maggie is being played in C#. Okay, what I really think happened is they transferred it from tape to CD and the keys do not match. It's probably in D, right? Anyway, this is my first chance to listen to "The Great Frank". What does everyone else think of Frank? He is a little Monroesque, but still has his own style.
    I ran into the same problem trying to learn 'Hey Mr. Mando' by ear off The Kitchen Tapes. Happily, I had some success piecing runs together, but the key didn't make sense, seemed over-complicated -- something wasn't right. Luckily I'd taken lessons with Frank all through college and just called him up to ask!

    Frank told me that when he and Red got together to jam they just tuned to each other and for The Kitchen Tapes session they happened to tune a little flat. Apparently bluegrass monsters don't fuss over precise tuning.

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    Mando accumulator allenhopkins's Avatar
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    Default Re: Red Allen and Frank Wakefield

    17-year gap between posts; is this a Cafe record?
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    Default Re: Red Allen and Frank Wakefield

    Quote Originally Posted by allenhopkins View Post
    17-year gap between posts; is this a Cafe record?
    Seems like it was just yesterday ...

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    Default Re: Red Allen and Frank Wakefield

    There is fantastic YouTube video of a young Wake Frankfield playing and singing (always loved Frank's voice too) Little Birdie with the equally young Greenbriar Boys w/ Jimmy Buchannan on fiddle.

    And Frank's break does indeed "split the Bluegrass Atom" as Dawg used to say. Now if only I'd learn to post a link one of these days...

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    Default Re: Red Allen and Frank Wakefield

    Quote Originally Posted by Glassweb View Post
    There is fantastic YouTube video of a young Wake Frankfield playing and singing (always loved Frank's voice too) Little Birdie with the equally young Greenbriar Boys w/ Jimmy Buchannan on fiddle.

    And Frank's break does indeed "split the Bluegrass Atom" as Dawg used to say. Now if only I'd learn to post a link one of these days...
    Yes, absolutely beautiful music there. Did you notice the missing binding on FWs mandolin...

    Also, putting the capo on the gazilionth fret in order to play in D out of a G fingering position (guitar and banjo) is mind boggling to me (and should be forbidden by the bluegrass police....).

    I still have a very soft spot in my heart for the Greenbriar Boys and like the guitar playing and singing of John Herald (died in 2005, suicide suspected), the banjo playing by Bob Yellin (who went to Israel later, but moved back to the US if Im not mistaken) and also Ralph Rinzler (instrumental in the careers of Bill Monroe and Doc Watson). Listen to f.ex. "The Blues My Naughty Sweety Gave To Me". Jimmy Buchanan is great on the Grisman release "Acousticity" and on some of Jim & Jesse McReynold releases.

    Olaf

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  26. #23
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    Default Re: Red Allen and Frank Wakefield

    Quote Originally Posted by allenhopkins View Post
    17-year gap between posts; is this a Cafe record?
    Seeing the old posts revived always makes me smile. There's so much history on the Cafe, both in terms of the topics discussed and the people posting whose name we don't see anymore.

  27. #24
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    Default Re: Red Allen and Frank Wakefield

    I'm glad this thread resurrected. I bought the Kitchen Tapes record because of it, and have "discovered" Frank at a good point in my journey. It's currently on solo rotation

  28. #25
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    Default Re: Red Allen and Frank Wakefield

    It was definitely a good thread resurrection. The Red Allen & Frank Wakefield CD, & even more so, the Kitchen Tapes are desert island recordings for me.

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