Friday, 22 November 2013

Child pop acts can be incredibly annoying - but the Collins Kids produced some sensational rockabilly

That's genuine rock 'n' roll, that is! 

Lorrie and Larry Collins were a brother and sister act from Oklahoma. Lorrie (who would have been around 15 at the time of this appearance on Tex Ritter's Ranch Party) had one of the few really convincing female rockabilly voices. And her brother, Larry (13 here, I'm guessing) was a genuine guitar-shredding prodigy. Here he and his mentor, the great Joe Maphis, duet on "Hurricane" (both playing twin-necked Mosrite guitars):


Lorrie, who was Ricky Nelson's first steady girl-friend, was just as good at slower stuff, as she proved with the bluesy "Rock Boppin' Baby":

The Collins Kids were first signed to Columbia Records in 1955. You'd have thought the label would have been able to rustle up some hits for such an outstandingly talented semi-novelty act - but they never made the charts. Larry had more success in later life as  a writer of country songs, including Tanya Tucker's big hit, "Delta Dawn". 

I'm not a big fan of their recordings, which generally failed to capture the great rockabilly feel of their best TV performances, but I'll leave you with Larry's self-penned "Hop, Skip and Jump" (1957), which is pretty good:


  1. She may have a great voice but he's still a really annoying kid who shouldn't have been indulged so much!

    1. I don't disagree with you - but annoying as he was, he could certainly play a guitar, and he wasn't hiding behind a bunch of professional session musicians.

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