(Knoxville, TN) Knoxville’s Mid-Day Merry-Go-Round and its cast of musicians are the subject of a lecture and book signing by Ruth B. White at the East Tennessee History Center, November 6, 2016. The occasion celebrates the launch of White’s new book, Knoxville’s ‘Merry-Go-Round,’ Ciderville, and the East Tennessee Music Scene.
The noonday show was broadcast live from WNOX for more than twenty years and attracted a loyal and enthusiastic audience. The host of on-air talent include many who went on to Nashville to become country greats, such as Roy Acuff, Chet Atkins, Archie Campbell, Don Gibson, the Carters, Homer and Jethro, and Carl Smith, to only name a few.
Knoxville’s ‘Merry-Go-Round,’ Ciderville, and the East Tennessee Country Music Scene is a warm, sometimes hilarious, insider’s look back at this early period of country music, the stories behind the lyrics, and the shared laughter, tragedies, and tears of the Merry-Go-Round cast.
Ruth married Harold White in 1965. He had been a steel guitarist on the Merry-Go-Round and was playing with Grand Ole Opry superstar Hank Williams when they met. Together they became an important part of the Nashville music scene, Harold as a musician and “song plugger,” and Ruth in music publishing.
David West and the Cider Mountain Boys will provide a nostalgic look at music popular in the Merry-Go-Round heyday. A banjoist, David played with the Bonnie Lou and Buster Show, then as a regular on the Cas Walker Show until it went off the air. An astute businessman, he is involved in many local enterprises, but his real love is the operation of Ciderville, selling musical instruments and one of the largest Martin Guitar dealers in the country. It also serves as a popular venue for country music performances. Ruth devotes a chapter in her book to David and Ciderville, describing it as a place where “sounds Nashville has forgotten, original sounds of the mountains and rural areas” are still being played.
A foreword by WNTT-AM radio host James Perry introduces the book.
The program at the East Tennessee History Center is from 2:30-4:30 p.m., Sunday, November 6. The event is free and open to the public. The East Tennessee History Center is located at 601 S. Gay Street, Knoxville. For more information on the lecture, exhibitions, or museum hours, call 865-215-8824 or visit the website at www.EastTNHistory.org.