The Brothers Four

Writing about The Kingston Trio the other day led me to reflect on other groups from the folk craze of the 60’s. The Brothers Four were frat brothers at the University of Washington, thus the group’s name. (The Brothers Four are still around in name only with no founding members in the group.)

They got their start about the same place and time as many others – San Francisco in the late 50’s. Running into Dave Brubeck’s manager and getting a contract with Columbia Records helped.

These guy groups from the era had a similar shtick: Woody Guthrie type stuff (Americana), comedy stuff and sweet, sensitive, reflective stuff.

The simple chords of Green Leaves of Summer, Try To Remember and others were easy for aspiring troubadours to strum and inspired many a young musician. I recall my own feeble efforts at a few of their tunes.

Greenfields was released in 1960 and made it to #2 on the pop charts.


“One can be the master of what one does, but never of what one feels.”
— Gustave Flaubert

Thought Of The Day provided by Thomas Brown – – Madwillow Creekhouse

Great Louisville Flood of 1937

It started raining in Louisville on January 13th, 1937. When the rain stopped on January 24th about 15 inches had fallen in only 12 days.

Here is a link to a zoomable map of the flooded areas of the city during the great flood of January, 1937. My parents had vivid memories of the event and we were told many flood stories. Early in my career I worked with veteran radio broadcasters who performed a great civic duty during the flood, relaying messages and calling for boat rescues when that medium was still young.

Louisville was not alone. Communities all along the mighty Ohio were affected.

Silent footage of the ’37 flood in various river communities.


“Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile,but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy.”
— Thich Nhat Hanh

Thought of the Day provided by Thomas Brown –

Gone To Graveyards Every One

Bob Shane, the last remaining member of the Kingston Trio, died Sunday at 85. The Trio’s music helped spark the folk music fad of the late 50’s and 60’s. I recently read a comic quote, I can’t remember who said it, but it was something like “Folk music – – do you realize how close we came to that sh*t actually actually catching on?” It did more than catch on. It steamrolled the music world and left indelible marks.

Peter Yarrow of Peter, Paul and Mary wrote of The Trio in 2014:

“Their music was a balm to the growing angst of a generation that was soon to turn our country and our world upside down. They tossed off renditions of song gems that felt effortless yet genuine, cool yet caring, sympathetic yet ‘no big ting.’ Sometimes they were wistful, as in ‘Sloop John B’; sometimes they sang a great, happy joke, as in ‘M.T.A.’; sometimes they were oddly, at least for men in those times, sensitive, as in ‘Tom Dooley’; and sometimes they were wonderfully cutting-edge ‘hip,’ as in Bob Shane’s classic rendition of ‘Scotch And Soda.'”

To my mind “Where Have All The Flowers Gone” is their signature song.


“Sometimes life is too hard to be alone, and sometimes life is too good to be alone.”
—Elizabeth Gilbert

Thought of the day provided by Thomas Brown – Madwillow Creekhouse.