Texas Day by Day

On this day in Texas history…


Texas fiddler performs on first commercial country music recording

June 30th, 1922

https://www.tshaonline.org/images/handbook/entries/Vocal Sheet Music
Image taken at random from the related Handbook of Texas entry, Folk Music

On this day in 1922, legendary Texas fiddler Alexander (Eck) Robertson, along with fiddler Henry C. Gilliland, made what most country music historians consider the first commercial recordings of country music. The duets included the famous "Arkansas Traveler" and "Turkey in the Straw." The following day, Robertson returned to the studio without Gilliland and recorded six additional tracks solo, including the popular "Sallie Gooden," as well as two tracks that were never released. The Victor Talking Machine Company issued a limited release of "Arkansas Traveler" and "Sallie Gooden" in September 1922, but not until April 1923 was the disc in wide circulation. Two other recordings of Robertson were released later in 1923 and 1924. Robertson set the trend for future performers, as fourteen Central Texas fiddlers succeeded him by recording commercially in the years shortly following his first recording.

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