Louis Marshall “Grandpa” Jones played the banjo and guitar and was known for his use of the “clawhammer” or “frailing” technique, where he strummed the banjo rather than picked it. He was Hee Haw‘s link to old-time country and gospel music, and played frequently with his wife, Ramona, or fellow banjo player David “Stringbean” Akeman, who will be in the spotlight next week. After returning from World War II, he started playing with the Grand Ole Opry where he was known for his singing and yodeling, his playing, and his comedy routines, which probably earned him the honor of being one of Hee Haw‘s original cast members. One of his bits on the show was when when the cast would holler “Hey, Grandpa! What’s for supper?” Some of the responses were classics:
- “Some large mouth bass as long as your arm, an’ roasting ears and ‘maters brought fresh from the farm. Fried apple pies, good and brown, and plenty of iced tea to go around.”
- “Fat young possum and candied yam, its the best d’rn eating in the land, and fresh coleslaw and pumpkin pie and hot brewed coffee that’ll take ya eye.”
- “Hog chitlins fix’d like mom used to and a piping hot bowl of vegetable stew, and homemade rolls with butter in between and rich pudding dessert, why it’s fit for a king.”
To which all would reply, “Yum yum!” Unless he came back with something like, “Well, they didn’t cut me no wood and the stove’s cold as ice, and we’ll eat bologna sandwiches and left-over rice. They didn’t bring ice, so the milk is not cold, and I guess that’ll teach ya to do as you’re told.”
Anyway, off to the music. Our first selection is “Mountain Dew,” taped at the Grand Ole Opry.
And our second, “When It’s Time For The Whippoorwills To Sing,” performed with wife Ramona on Hee Haw.
Grandpa Jones, your Two for Tuesday, September 24, 2013.