Robertson’s Tradition & Ouachita River Ramblers
Our show tonight was made doubly great! Not only were we getting to see our old friends, The Ouachita River Ramblers, we also got another chance to hear the Robertson’s Tradition girls do a few tunes as they opened for the ‘Ramblers.
Robertson’s Tradition are Grace, Annabel, Jill and Abigail Robertson, accompanied by Grandpa Billy Robertson, Great Uncle Jerry Robertson, and special guest, James Scrimshire, on bass.
The Girls opened their set with “Wayfaring Stranger” and stayed in the gospel mode with “His Hand Is Gently Knocking” and “In My Father’s House.” They did a great job on a Randy Travis tune called “Three Wooden Crosses.” They did a fantastic job on “Keep Your Heart Young.” Great Uncle Jerry was asked to do an original written by one of the Robertsons’ brothers in Virginia, called “Momma’s Old Wood Stove.” They ended their set with the great John Denver’s “Country Roads.”
These girls have that magic harmony that only families seem to capture. I hope they get the chance to stay together as a performing group, They sure have a great sound, and we’re proud to have them perform here!
After a very short break the Ouachita River Ramblers gathered in front of the mic for a reunion on the ‘Porch that was three years in the making. The ‘Ramblers are Jerry Robertson on the left handed upside down guitar and vocals, Terry McLarty, also on guitar and harmony, Danny Williams on mandolin and vocals, Don Knowles on banjo and vocals, Quinn Martin on the doghouse bass, and Helen Martin on fiddle. Sadly, Al Crawford is in poor health and can’t play anymore.
The Ouachita River Ramblers opened their set with a great old standard, “Washed My Hands In Muddy Water.” The ‘Ramblers admitted to being just a little rusty, and they suffered some initial feedback problems, but they got the problems solved and took off from there, getting going with an old Earnest Tubb tune, “Thanks A Lot,” followed by a good version of “Sitting on Top of the World.” Jerry took the lead on “Take Me Back to the Sweet Sunny South,” a song made popular by Joan Baez. “The Old Home Place” followed, with some fine banjo picking, and Danny Williams on the vocals. Terry did some great picking on “Way Down Deep Inside My Soul.” Danny took another turn on vocal with “More Pretty Girls Than One,” and Helen got in on some fiddle. Love and Murder are standard themes in bluegrass music, and so it was in “The Banks of the Ohio.” They finished their first set in three years with a classic, “Big Spiike Hammer,” another happy song about love and hammers!
After a short break, they rebounded with “Fox On the Run,” “Mountain Laurel,” and then they moved into all gospel with “Life Is Like a Mountain Railroad,” “Little Mountain Church,” “Three Men On the Mountain,” “Let’s All Go Down to the River,” “Angel Band,” “I’ve Just Seen the Rock of Ages,” and “Wayfaring Stranger,” with some great guitar from Terry. They continued with “Crying Holy Unto the Lord,“ “Little White Church,” and an instrumental called “Bells of St Marys.” They did a great job on a tune that Jerry Robertson wrote called “This Road of Life.” They finished their show with a rousing version of “Precious Jesus Hold My Hand.“
We are hoping that it won’t be another three years before they again perform on the Front Porch Stage! Sure enjoyed their music this evening!
Big thanks to Robertson’s Tradition for opening this show, and, hopefully, we’ll see you again soon. Huge thanks to The Ouachita River Ramblers for doing a reunion on the porch.
Thanks to all who came out, and a big Thank You to the volunteers who make it all happen!