If there is a better name for an old-timey music town than Paw Paw, West Virginia, I don’t know what it is. And that’s where The Critton Hollow String Band are from.
Their core founders are Joe and Sam Herrmann, husband and wife, joined for many years by Joe Fallon, and in this version of the band, Peter Gordon. We had been playing their second album, Sweet Home (1983), and were delighted to discover they were in the neighborhood and willing to play live on Hillbilly at Harvard.
Actually, while I have tapes of The Down Home Show, which I hosted before HAH, from 1985 and earlier, Old Sinc was recording HAH at home, and his tapes were apparently trashed by his landlord after Sinc’s death. So it was a delightful surprise to discover a tape cassette of The Critton Hollow String Band playing live in Studio A on April 27th, 1985. Old Sinc hosts; I was on the board. The Critton Hollow folks played two sets, one before the Hillbilly News at Noon (yes, a real newscast, read [mostly] straight by me and Sinc), and one for the last half hour, closing out the show. Sinc liked to get a live band to play an instrumental that he could do the Country Calendar over, and TCHSB obliged. You’ll also hear a vintage version of Sinc ‘making the beep’, as I have described in a recent post, ‘The Beep, and How to Make It’.
The Critton Hollow String Band are still performing and touring as a trio. You can find their schedule on their website.
Tune in at 9 o’clock this Saturday morning (EDT, of course), 22Oct22, for a rare treat: an Archival hour with The Critton Hollow String Band, followed by another Home-Brewed Hour of Hillbilly at Harvard. /CL