Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Navy Hoedown

The U.S. Navy ran a great number of radio programs trying to keep recruitment up. These shows were very entertainment-oriented and according to the literature of the day.. carried on at least 2,000 radio stations. These kinds of programs included : Sounds like the Navy, Serenade in Blue, Navy Swings, Navy Hour, Navy Startime, and my favorite.. Navy Hoedown. Archive.org has one episode here.

There were at least a hundred episodes of the Navy Hoedown. At 15 minutes each that's almost a solid day of hoedown. That's a lot of hoedown. Patsy Cline recorded a program for the Navy Hoedown. The book Patsy: the life and times of Patsy Cline described it thus:

"That month at the invitation of Faron Young, she taped six songs for two 15-minute military recruitment programs for the Navy called "Navy Hoedown." the format was long enough for 3 or 4 songs, a couple of commercials and some canned dialogue. between host and guest."
Faron Young in that case was the Host of the Opry. He did however also record his own programs for The Navy Hoedown. In 1997 a set of those were released on Bronco Buster as "Faron Young and the Circle A Wranglers. In 91 programs Navy Hoedown covered the gamut of country musicians big and small from the 1950s into the 1970s. These 1970s programs were available on vinyl. The earliest ones in the 50s were on 16-Inch transcription disc.

Artists included Ferlin Husky, Patsy Cline, Norro Wilson, Hank Williams Jr., Hugh X. Lewis, Marvis Thompson, Joe Stampley, Conway Twitty, Skeeter Davis, Barbara Mandrell, David Huston, Dolly Parton, Ernest Tubb, George Jones, Tammy Wynette, Don Gibson, Mel Tillis, Hal Durham, Carl Smith, Bobby Bare Sr. many many others... I did find a small set of serial numbers. I assume the "NH" stands for Navy Hoedown and the first two digits stand for the year. This stretch would be from the early 1970s. I compile them here hoping you other radio geeks fill in the blanks. The program seems to end abruptly in 1975.

NH 70-9 Hugh X. Lewis
NH 70-10 Hugh X. Lewis
NH 70-11 Bobby Bare
NH 70-12 Bobby Bare
NH 70-13 Bobby Bare
NH 70-14 Bobby Bare
NH 71-41 Jack Greene
NH 71-42 Jeannie Seely
NH 72-30 Loretta Lynn
NH 72-47 Sammi Smith
NH 72-48 Sammi Smith
NH 73-13 Pat Daisy
NH 73-14 Pat Daisy
NH 73-33 Bobby Bare
NH 73-34 Bobby Bare
NH 73-35 Bobby Bare
NH 73-36 Bobby Bare
NH 74-17 Barbara Fairchild
NH 74-17 Barbara Fairchild
NH 74-32 Freddy Fender
NH 74-32 Freddy Fender
NH 9-51 George Jones / Tammy Wynette

*****UPDATE*****
  With the addition of NH 9-51, I have to assume the numbering scheme works differently than I had assumed. I will continue to update this discography at a static page here.