Carter Family


Carter Family
a US family of folk music singers. The original Carter Family performed from 1927 to 1941 and included A P Carter, his wife Sara and his brother’s wife Maybelle. Their successful songs included Wabash Cannonball and Will the Circle Be Unbroken? ‘Mother’ Maybelle later formed a second Carter Family with her three daughters. In 1970 the original Carter Family was the first group chosen for the Country Music Hall of Fame.

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U.S. singing group.

It consisted of Alvin Pleasant Carter (1891–1960), his wife Sara (1898–1979), and his sister-in-law Maybelle (1909–78). Natives of Virginia, they began their career began in 1927. Over 14 years, with various combinations of Carter daughters, they recorded more than 300 songs from the 19th and early 20th centuries, including "Wabash Cannonball," "I'm Thinking Tonight of My Blue Eyes," "Wildwood Flower," and "Keep on the Sunny Side." They helped popularize Appalachian folk songs. After the original group broke up in 1941, members continued to perform under the Carter family name, "Mother" Maybelle Carter performing with her daughters and later with her son-in-law Johnny Cash. The Original Carter Family was the first group admitted (1970) to the Country Music Hall of Fame.

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▪ American singers
      singing group consisting of Alvin Pleasant Carter, known as A.P. Carter (b. April 15, 1891, Maces Spring, Virginia, U.S.—d. November 7, 1960, Kentucky), his wife, Sara, née Sara Dougherty (b. July 21, 1898, Flatwoods, Virginia—d. January 8, 1979, Lodi, California), and his sister-in-law Maybelle Carter (Carter, Maybelle), née Maybelle Addington (b. May 10, 1909, Nickelsville, Virginia—d. October 23, 1978, Nashville, Tennessee), that was a leading force in the spread and popularization of Appalachian folk songs.

      The family's recording career began in 1927 in response to an advertisement placed in a local newspaper by a talent scout for Victor records. Over the next 16 years, with two of Sara's children and three of Maybelle's (Helen, June (Cash, June Carter), and Anita) also appearing, they recorded more than 300 songs for various labels, representing a significant cross section of the mountain-music repertory, including old ballads and humorous songs, sentimental pieces from the 19th and early 20th centuries, and many religious pieces. They later performed extensively on radio and popularized many songs that became standards of folk and country music; some of these were "Jimmy Brown, the Newsboy," "Wabash Cannonball," "It Takes a Worried Man to Sing a Worried Song," and "Wildwood Flower."

      In 1943 the Carter Family disbanded, and its members subsequently formed various groups. Maybelle (“Mother”) Carter performed with her daughters, as a soloist, and later with her son-in-law, the singer Johnny Cash (Cash, Johnny). In the 1950s the Carter Family re-formed and appeared intermittently, with a changing lineup. The original Carter Family was the first group admitted to the Country Music Hall of Fame.

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Universalium. 2010.

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