Sunday, June 8, 2014

Alf. Taylor and his Old Limber Quartet - Victor 19451

Alf. Taylor and his Old Limber Quartet / Victor 19451
Pharoah`s Army Got Drownded / Brother Noah Built An Ark
recorded August 11, 1924 in New York City
What an unusual record! First, Alfred Taylor was an ex-governor of Tennessee, as had his brother Bob also. Alf & Bob actually were of different political parties, one being a Democrat, the other a Republican. They ran against each other at least in one election. This campaign became known as Tennessee`s War Of The Roses, as apparantly the campaign between the two brothers was quite friendly. Both brothers were old-time fiddlers and both played at the campaign rallies. Old time music was quite common at campaign rallies up into the 1950`s. For instance, in Georgia, Both Fiddlin` John Carson and Gid Tanner both fiddled for governor`s campaigns. These campaigns must have been quite a sight to see, and hear!
Now, concerning the record---although Alf Taylor was an old time fiddler, no fiddle music is on this disc. He recorded about three sided besides what is on this record that were fiddle tunes, but for some reason they were never issued on disc. Reading the description on the Pharoah`s Army Got Drownded Side, I expected to hear a Fox Chase type tune, something similar to harmonicaist DeFord Bailey`s Fox Chase or the old Gid Tanner Fox Chase record. But no, we get a narrative from Alf Taylor about a fox hunt, then a "Negro" (in Alf Taylor`s words) quartet sing the old spiritual number, Mary Don`t You Weep. The quartet is quite good. Then on the other side is another number by the "Negro" quartet sang quite well. And what an unusual name for a group, The Old Limber Quartet. Well, Alf Taylor gives us a hint in his narrative about where that name may have came from, a favorite hound named Old Limber. Happy downloading!

Click here to download Alf. Taylor and his Old Limber Quartet - Victor 19451


  1. Robert Love TaylorJune 24, 2014 at 11:52 AM

    The Old Limber Quartet was not a "Negro" quartet; it was composed of Alf Taylor and his sons. On the recording, Alf states that the quartet sings in the manner of the "old Negroes" gathered around a campfire after a fox hunt.

    1. Actually, he says "the boys organized a quartet". Seems he`s meaning the boys at the hunt, not necessarily the men on the record. We really can`t tell who the quartet is from the record or what is said on it. BUT, according to the book by Tony Russell, Country Music Records A Dicography, 1921-1942, the people on the record besides ex-governor Taylor are Nat Taylor, Alfred Taylor Jr., David Taylor & Bob Wardrep. So I`d say these are his sons.
      Unfortunately Alf Taylor also recorded 4 other sides that were never issued. I`d love to hear them!

    2. I would too, these are the best!

  2. I have a picture of what was known as the Happy Valley Foxhunter Quartette that I'm sure was the same personnel as the Old Limber Quartet, consisting of his sons Dave, Nate, and Alf Jr. and a neighbor R.C. Wardrep, unfortunately I don't see any way to attach it here but anyone can write me at raymondboettger at the gmail place for a copy.