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Carver Boys


carver boys

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The Carver Boys that recorded a series of sides for Paramount in the late ’20s was just one chapter in a family history that included bands performing under this name back into the 1800s. The family’s musical patriarch was Lorenzo Dow Carver, who was born in Kentucky in 1874. He led bands made up of various combinations of family members throughout that state and neighboring Tennessee from 1900 through approximately 1910. The family’s most famous performing member was Emmy Carver, best-known to the bluegrass and old-time music world as the raucous, banjo-picking Cousin Emmy. Lorenzo Carver’s cousin was the highly entertaining Noble “Uncle Bozo” Carver, who formed the family’s next generation combo with brothers Warren Carver and Noble Carver, born in 1891 and 1896, respectively. It was this group that was eventually approached by Paramount scouts, leading to a recording session which produced not only a number of fine records but also a great deal of confusion, much of it typical of the music business during this era.

Uncle Bozo began performing when he was only 11, finding a willing and enthusiastic audience at local schools for his guitar picking, singing, and dancing. By 17, he had climbed up the ladder of available gigs to reach the height afforded by appearances at state fairs throughout Kentucky. Beginning in 1922, he worked for some seven years in various medicine shows, including Dr. Kelso’s Medicine Show, which was based out of Indianapolis.

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  • ApatheticJ

    Holy Crap. These are my great uncles. I can't believe they're on here. That is just too cool. ;D

    31 Mar 2012 Reply

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