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Mac Wiseman

Famed for his clear and mellow tenor voice, Mac Wiseman recorded with many great bluegrass bands, including those of Molly O'Day, Flatt & Scruggs, Bill Monroe, and the Osborne Brothers; his command of traditional material made him much in demand by bluegrass and folk fans alike. Wiseman was born in Crimora, VA and grew up influenced by traditional and religious music and such radio stars as Montana Slim Carter. Wiseman started out working as a radio announcer in Harrisonburg in 1944. At the same time he worked as a singer with Buddy Starcher. He later formed his own group and continued performing with others, including Molly O'Day and Flatt & Scruggs, through the '40s. In 1949, he recorded a single, "Travelin' Down This Lonesome Road," with Bill Monroe. By the 1950s, Wiseman was again leading his own band.

Possessing one of the best tenor voices in bluegrass, Wiseman differed from Monroe and Flatt & Scruggs in that he usually sang alone, with little or no harmonizing. His band also employed two fiddles to play contemporary songs such as Speedy Krise's "Goin' Like Wildfire," as well as adaptations of standards such as the Carter Family's "Wonder How the Old Folks Are at Home" and Mac & Bob's "'Tis Sweet to Be Remembered." With the Country Boys, a band that featured such pioneering musicians as Eddie Adcock and Scott Stoneman, Wiseman recorded many popular local singles, and had his first national Top 10 hit with his version of "The Ballad of Davy Crockett." The song's success steered Wiseman away from bluegrass and more towards pop and country. In 1957, he began recording for Dot; he had a few major successes for the label with such songs as "Jimmy Brown the Newsboy" before moving to Capitol in 1962, where he recorded both country and bluegrass tunes. He began working for Wheeling's WWVA Jamboree in 1965, and also began to play at bluegrass festivals; over the next three decades, he became one of the most popular performers on the circuit.

Wiseman moved to Nashville in 1969 and signed with RCA Victor. His first -- and only -- hit for the label was the Top 40 novelty tune "If I Had Johnny's Cash and Charley's Pride." While at RCA, he also recorded three well-received bluegrass albums with Lester Flatt. From the mid-'70s on, Wiseman concentrated on bluegrass, becoming a fixture at festivals and releasing a series of records on independent records that ran into the '90s. In 1992, Wiseman narrated the documentary High Lonesome, a chronicle of bluegrass music, and in 1993 was inducted into the Bluegrass Hall of Fame. ~ Sandra Brennan & David Vinopal, Rovi
full bio

Selected Discography

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Track List: 'Tis Sweet To Be Remembered: Complete Recordings 1951-1964

Disc 1
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Disc 4

Comments

Well here I am from rocker to hillbilly
one of my favorites is jimmy brown brown news boy. jwm,
God. Made only one mack Wiseman...th e best talent in bluegrass.
There will Never be another Mac Wiseman! HE IS STILL THE VOICE.
I remember my Dad was a devoted Mac Wiseman fan from the early fifties and I inherited his love of the unique voice of Mr. Wiseman, who has contributed so much to bluegrass music.
alsites2001
Mac Wiseman,,a great one I first saw him in person at watermillon park berryville va ,,early 70s when he played with the shanadoah cutups,what a sound ,I still have the r to r tapes ..& he still sounds great today,that voice will never be copyed
eolilly
Mac Wiseman is truly one of all time greats in bluegrass music with a voice that can be distinguishe d from all the others. I've been a fan of his for many years!!
I love it.
I am a rock and roll fan of the 70's, but when I heard Mac, I became an instant fan, he has a voice that is perfect for the music he sings, I love bluegrass the way he does it, plus he seems to have a moral for each song.
When I was a child, I remember my mother speak about Mac Wiseman. She had met him when she was in a country music band before she settled down to raise her family. She always spoke highly of Mr. Wiseman. We would help a family friend, Ken Alexander set up sound for bluegrass festivals and Mac Wiseman was always a stand out performer at these events. He is everything you think of when you think of the great artists of bluegrass. What wonderful childhood memories these events created for me.
One of the very best in bluegrass...
he was born in my home town in crimora va one heck ofnice man who always rememberd thepeople back home thanks for years fine blugrass the only you can do it jimmy

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