Chuck Wagon Gang

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I gave Charles his main present today. A half-dozen Chuck Wagon Gang LPs.

The only musicians that Charles and I each owned a CD by when we met was the Chuck Wagon Gang. A few months ago our friend, Frank, was kind enough to copy an LP of their music to CD for Charles. He plays it often, particularly when he needs a lift.

He grew up listening to their music and for him it is a beautiful reminder of his happy times as a kid and of his family.

The Chuck Wagon Gang is an old-fashioned, white gospel group. Unlike the black gospel groups that I collect white gospel has hardly ever been collected on compact disc.

Several weeks ago, Harold was visiting our shop. Knowing how badly Charles wanted Chuck Wagon Gang music it surprised me that I hadn't thought of Harold before. He deals only in gospel with an inventory of over 15,000 records. Turned out he'd had some of their work that was so rare that the group members themselves had bought copies from him.

I didn't have that kind of budget. I told Harold that Charles liked the earlier songs. Gave him a price limit and asked him to pick our the LPs for me.

I have him the records today. We weren't able to find his turntable. So we went to a pawnshop around the corner and bought an old Sony turntable with a dead cartrige for $25.00.

Long ago Radio Shack was the place you went for electronics components. They had the first shop you could walk into and buy a personal computer. (My first PC was an even then out-of-date TRS Model III.) Nowadays you go there to buy a cellphone. They still have a catalog of turntable components you can order. But long gone are the people who knew what they were looking at.

Luckily nearby was a place that does everything from repair VCRs to supply Durham's DJs with their sound systems and lights. A nice guy was able to identify a cartridge that would work. Another #29.99. I'm hoping to connect the turntable to the PC and burn the songs on CDs.

The happy ending is that Charles is in the living room listening to his birthday gifts.

Nothing makes me happier than seeing him smile so we're both very happy indeed on the eve of his birthday.

Comments

Like Charles, I grew up on the Chuck Wagon Gang. I am a lot older. The ones I am after are the records published in the early 1960’s. I still have them and I have taped them off, but the records and tapes are scratchy. Can you give me the name and address of the place you got the records from.The newest ones I can find don’t have the old sound I am after. M.R. Hare

I am from Jamaica and the music of The Chuck Wagon Gang was commonplace in our home. My siblings and I would always be awaken by the sweet melodious sound of the group as my mom would play the music on the record player early in the morning. Two of my sisters, my brothers and I eventual formed a singing group and performed their music numerous times at various churches in our town of May Pen, Jamaica.

Presently, I am trying to collect as many of their albums as I can find to burn them on CD’s and hopefully keep them for the rest of my life. The music reminds me of a simpler more beautiful time in my life when dreams were real and you could feel the presence of God leading you. Today, despite my achievements, I have become cynical, suspicious and impersonal. But there is hope for me yet, because like Charles, a smile creeps across my face and I instinctively close my eyes when I hear their music because the music lifts my spirit and fills me with hope and joy.

God bless The Chuck Wagon Gang and I hope that one of the major record companies would put together a box set of the group. It would be a treasure worth whatever the charge. They are indeed special.

Ken

How wonderful to find this site where we can comment on our favorite group… THE CHUCK WAG0N GANG. We have (several) of the original vinyl albums on Columbia and Harmony labels. I have been re-recording them on to CD, the quality is great. Also I even have several of the original 78 rpm records of the group and a friend of mine gave me a collection of 45’s that belonged to her precious mother and I am currently recording them on to CD’s. We would love to hear from others who enjoy this precious old time gospel music. If you have something we don’t have, we might want a copy or if We have something you might desire to have, please contact us at our email address…wasburdick@aol.com. We will be waiting to hear from you… God bless each one. Pastor Wayne & Sylvia Burdick.

If you are looking for Chuck Wagon Gang, I am THE number one source of their material that is currently marketed today, as well as collectibles of the past. I am a former member of the group (1985-1994) and was a fan years before becoming a member. Through the years I have collected every recording ever released, including all country/folk ones.

I have CDs, videos, cassettes for sale as well as collector albums of the past plus 78s and 45s.

I have an all CWG page at http://www.gospelgallery.com/chuckwagongang.html

Fans and collectors please feel free to email me at harold@gospelgallery.com

Harold Timmons

Can anyone send me the lyrics to “After the Sunrise” Thanks, Cathy

It is truly a great joy to have in my posession just about all the Chuch Wagon CD’s. The album intitle “Songs of faith and Glory ” has always been my favorit, Oh if i can only Get a CD it will be a wonderful blessing. I have been a fan of the Gang all of my life. Watching them peform on their Hall of Fame Video brought tears to my eyes and joy to my heart. over my 51yrs. listening to gospel no other Group had ever blessed me like the Chuch Wagon Gang. To me they are the family i never knew. but one day i hope to see them in heaven, where we will be a part of the everlasting Choir. we will meet to never part. I truley thank God for Mr. Harrold Timmons, truly sir you are a blessing to many. It is my Prayer that God continue to Bless and keep you as you continue to keep on spreading the gospel in song. especially the “Gang”

The Chuck Wagon Gang the greatest they on the radio, while I’ve growing up they priceless. should play them never be another like them.

I too loved the Church Wagon Gang and have heart that two of the women singers were related to my husband. We work on genealogy and would to know if anyone could give us the names of the singers. Maybe we would recognize their married names although learning their maiden names would be wonderful. Thanks for listening and God bless.

Elaine

Oops!!!! This is Elaine again and I forgot to leave my email addy which is meme@gvec.net…..thanks.

I am 45, unmarried and would call myself agnostic. I have loved the CWG for as long as I can remember. My dad would wake up a house full of kids every Sunday morning with the great sounds of the original Chuck Wagon Gang. He had quite a collection of their earliest Columbia LPs and EPs (remember those?) The Chucks were, no doubt, Dad’s favorite musical artists. I remember how he loved to go for a visit to relatives’ or family friends’ homes on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon and would often carry his Webcor Hi-Fi set and a number of select CWG records with him. He and I would get up early every weekday morning and watch the Chucks on their TV program “Gospel Roundup” and we enjoyed them very much with our breakfast.

On July 3, 1984 I drove Dad and Mom to Malden, Mo where the annual Fourth of July Country festival was underway. On the 3rd was a big gospel program held outdoors and on this occasion that show featured several local groups, the Master’s Five and the Chuck Wagon Gang. It was my understanding that Roy was carrying on the tradition using younger siblings of the Carter family. I saw the original members, Rose and Anna as the essential nucleus of a true Chuck Wagon Gang, but from what I’d heard and read I knew that Rose almost never appeared with the group anymore and that Anna appeared on an infrequent basis. So I was expecting a new quartet, but was willing to give them a chance.

In between two local family groups one of the MCs of the program, a local DJ announced, “Folks, I’ve just been told that a vehicle with Texas plates on it has pulled up out back and they’re sure it’s the Chuck Wagon Gang!” This brought a spontaneous applause from the crowd of about 3,000 people. I abandoned my bleacher seat at once telling my parents I’d be back in a few minutes. I made my way back to the area behind the stage and quickly recognized Roy Carter and stood contemplating how to approach him when I noticed a lady who seemed familiar. Could it be Anna? She was encircled by members of the Masters’ Five who seemed humbled by her presence.

At my first opportunity I approached her asking “Are you Anna?”. “Why yes!” she answered in a spirit of gracious kindness that put me at ease. I then explained that I had been a fan of the Chuck Wagon Gang since before I could talk and that my dad was an even bigger fan and he and my mom were there in the audience. I added that Dad had recently been through Cancer treatment and had other health concerns and said “Goodness, you can’t know what it would mean to him if he could come back here and meet you and Roy!” Without hesitation Anna said, “Well why don’t ya just bring him on back cause we’d sure enjoy meeting him too!”

I went back to where my parents were seated and said, “Listen, I just met Anna out back and told her what a great fan you were and she said she’d enjoy meeting you. Come on with me!” It took no more coaxing than just that to get my unassuming parents to follow me in what was next to a trot! When I introduced them to Anna Dad said “Oh, we’ve adored your singing for years and years and I sure didn’t ever dream I’d get to meet you—not in a hundred years!” It was then that Anna did something that I, right up to this day, have a vivid picture of. She put her arm around Daddy’s shoulders and walked with him asking, “Well, tell me Ralph, what are some of your favorite songs of ours?” “Oh, there’s just dozens and dozens of ‘em…”Love is the Key”, “On and On We Walk Together”, “If We Never Meet Again”, “Glory on the Winning Side”…I could never remember them all right now.” While Dad and Mom continued their conversation with Anna, I introduced myself to Roy whom Dad also met momentarily and had a quality brief visit with.

Dad passed away a little over 7 years after he got to meet Anna and Roy. Inside those few years and right up until the last, we must have heard Dad recount this memorable evening a hundred times. It meant a great deal to me, but it was ten times as profound to Daddy for many reasons!

I moved to Nashville a year or two later and got aquainted with Harold Timmons when I purchased several classic CWG collectibles from him. Right about that time Harold went on the road with Roy, Ruth Ellen, Pat McKeehan , etc. introducing piano to their stage performances. I supported them, but these members always knew that Rose and Anna would always be my favorites. In 1989 Rose and Anna finally responded to a series of invitations to the annual Grand Ole Gospel Reunion held in Greenville, SC. That year they were the featured attraction and were treated by fans and peers like they were queens. I attended a breakfast for members of the CWG Fan Club at the Hyatt Hotel after driving all night before. The club’s president saved me a seat directly across from Rose. It was a half hour before I could compose myself enough to speak. It was overwhelming to be in the presence of such greatness! Rose and Anna were invited back every year after than and they were able to attend for three more of the annual events. I was able to forge something of a friendship with “Sister Rose” which continued after she stopped traveling to the yearly event. I phoned her about once a year and enjoyed a long memorable chat with her each time. She loved to talk about the days when she was in that “crazy business”, as she called it. One phone bill showed over 100 minutes. She was hard to break it off with —it was obvious that she was lonesome after her husband’s death. She’d say, “It’s just me and Peanut now!” “Peanut” was her Chijuajua. Something else she’d say over and over was “I’d rather visit with one of my fans than just about anybody in the world!” It was thrilling to gossip with her and I learned a lot about the golden years of white gospel music. I tried her number in 1998 and got a recording. I called a mutual friend who informed me that Rose had passed away in her sleep over a year earlier. She was 83. She had been the most unique small group lead singer and there was no telling how many people from multiple generations had loved her!

I hope to see more and more reissues of recordings of the original Gang. They could not be beat for quality in a hundred years. They were so great that their body of work merits being preserved for many more years!

Thank you for this forum!

Dennis Francis, Sikeston, Missouri

Sad news that was passed along to me by Harold Timmons: Anna Carter Davis, the original alto of the Chuck Wagon Gang, passed away last night in Shannon, TX.

Like many of you, I have been a fan of the original CWG all my life, and of all of them, Anna was my favorite. Indeed, although I love many different kinds of music, from Ella Fitzgerald to Frank Sinatra to Maria Callas, Anna was my favorite singer of all time, truly one of the great voices of the last century. I was lucky enough to meet her on a few occasions at concerts, from the time I was 12 years old until the last time I saw her sing, around 10 years ago. She was always so gracious and kind.

Anna’s music touched my life in ways that I can’t begin to express, and it will continue to do so as long as I live.

Rodney Hill Paris, France rhillnyc@yahoo.com

correction: Anna passed away in Ft. Worth, TX.

I am from St.Kitts in the caribbean. I grew up with the Chuck Wagon Gang. I can remember every mid-day the only gospel radio station, Radio Paradise, will play their songs for 30 minutes. Whenever we here their songs, we know it is lunch time. And lunch time it was, because after listening them you are filled with the blessings from the songs. I have a couple LPs but would like to know where I can purchase more. My husband and I are old fashioned and loves the old fashion songs. The Chuck Wagon Gang was a part of my spiritual growth and continues to be because of their inspiring message in the songs. God Bless the CWG.

For purchasing the old Chuck Wagon Gang record albums, see posting #4 above, from Harold Timmons. He is the best single source for their music, not to mention a former member of the group, and probably the greatest authority on their history. You can reach Harold by email: harold@gospelgallery.com

He that has a great nose thinks everybody is speaking of it...

I am 61 years old and the Chuck Wagon Gang has been my all-time favorite group. As a teenager, I bought a Chuck Wagon Gang hymnal. It is somewhat tattered, but I still have it and do specials at church from the hymnal. What a blessing it will be if someone can point me where I can buy several more hymnals. I would like to distribute them among our chyrch members so we can all sing these wonderful hymns together! If anyone can help I will be forever grateful. Can email me at vjelam@aol.com. THANK YOU !

Your feelings?

Please share your feelings about Chuck Wagon Gang.
Thanks,
Richard

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