Monday, October 18, 2010

Jimmie Riddle - harmonica, accordion & piano picker & Eeepher

Here a nice LP by a great artist. Jimmie started professional music with the Swift Jewel Cowboys (which I`ve never heard or know anything about) In the late 30`s on accordion. Then, about 1940 or 41 Roy Acuff hired him. At first he played mostly accordion (for some reason accordion was popular in country music then, likely due to the popularity of Pee Wee King. Bill Monroe even used one for awhile.) As time went by through the 40`s he gradually switched to mostly harmonica. Listen to Roy Acuff recordings in the 40`s to really hear Jimmie.
Jimmie was a GREAT harmonica player. Besides playing and recording with Acuff, he was a session man on many records in the 60`s.
He was well known for making and imitating all sorts of sounds. One thing he was famous for was the great old harmonica standard, The Fox Chase, and was very good at making the sounds with his harp and voice.
Now friends----the thing he is best remembered for is his stint on Hee Haw with Jackie Phelps (Phelps had played electric guitar with Acuff in the 60`s and him and Riddle got together then) performing their act of Hambone and Eeephin`. If you ever saw it one single time you`ll remember it. I loved it when I was a kid.
Now a little about the LP. It`s a good harmonica record, but don`t really capture Jimmie somehow for me. Still a good download though.

Click here to download Jimmie Riddle - Country Harmonica

Here is where Jimmie really starts to get interesting (at least to my warped taste). I have included scans of both the promo copy and the public issue of the 45.

Click here to download Jimmie Riddle - Decca 45

Now we are gonna get just plumb ridiculous! I had found a few things of Jimmie on the internet about Eeephin`.
Track list----
1. Jimmie`s Eeephin` Lesson
2. Little Eeephin` Annie (an early 60`s release by a rock artist I can`t remember the name of, so sorry)
3. Last known recording of Jimmie Eeephin`

Click here to download Jimmie Riddle Eeephin`

I have heard a rumor that Jimmie recorded another LP, but have never been able to find one or any information about it. PLEASE contact me through the blog if you have any information about it.

Below is a picture of a cd that is available of Jimmie Riddle and Jackie Phelps. It was apparently recorded and never released by Starday on LP for some reason. If you like the downloads, you`ll really like the cd. Huntin` Blues is a great one!!


  1. Jackie Phelps is as fantastic on the guitar as Jimmie is on the harp. Nice to see someone letting young people here them

  2. Yes he was, Floyd. I think my next post will be Jackie Phelps.

  3. Eephing' is something I barely had heard of. It is pretty amazing, awfully silly and doggoned absurd! Thanks for the fascinating post.

  4. Jimmie Riddle did cut an album with Dick Unteed and the Pine Mountain Boys for Rural Rhythm in 1968ish, titled "Irish and Country Comedy" by Dick Unteed.

  5. I got here on this webpage because I was trying to find the release year of an album by Jimmy Riddle that I have in my collection. So yes, there is another album by him: "Let's Go - Jimmy Riddle and his harmonica" released on Briar International Records out of Nashville Tennessee. But like I mentioned, I don't know what year. I got my second hand copy a few years back thru a mail-order auction, and although pretty worn it is still playable.
    of Bandana Blues with Beardo & Spinner

  6. Hi Spinner----I actually have discovered that fact. I have got it from a person who contacted me through the blog from Europe. I have not posted it because I don`t own the LP. Maybe I can find it someday---Allen

  7. Excellent!
    Never heard of these guys.
    Can't have too many Harmonica records, I always say.
    Just collect my Suzuki harmonic at PIJ.

  8. Swift Jewel Cowboys:

  9. Thanks for the image, I have the mono version and have been updating my database, with cover images/scans, so this will fit real nice.

    Again, many thanks

  10. I used to have an old 78 of my dad's of the Swift Jewel Cowboys. I don't remember much about it, but I believe they were sponsored by Swift Hams.

    1. I seen to have seen a picture somewhere of the band advertising Swift lard. Of course lard would be connected to ham. Lol!