Sandrock Recordings

Posted on December 21, 2015

I’d like to note here that while pursuing my own photographic interests in the Tennessee, I work as Assistant Producer at Sandrock Recordings. Please visit the Sandrock site to view our current catalog.

I’m so lucky to be a part of this team led by Park Ranger Bobby Fulcher. This NPR story on Bobby’s work can provide some context. This is a project not to be overlooked.

We have many new releases, so please take some time to peruse our catalog. One of the recent projects I am most proud of, Born Ramblers, showcases the repertoire of Tom and Tammie McCarroll. Tom is pictured throughout the years below. We recently lost this eldest son of the infamous Fiddling Jimmy McCarroll of the Roane County Ramblers. I really miss this dear friend and am committed to securing his legacy with this final album release. Tom and his daughter Tammie played music together for decades. Tom and Jimmy taught Tammie to play when the instruments were larger than she was! This family—whose name which fittingly translates to “the King’s Musicians”—and their musical heritage are a precious gift to us here in Tennessee’s Cumberland Plateau. It has been a rare privilege to work with this family.
The McCarroll family homeplace in Wheat, Tennessee
Jimmy McCarroll at front
Jimmy McCarroll’s string band the Roane County Ramblers, ca. 1928
Photograph courtesy of Tammie McCarroll
Members of the McCarroll family in a cornfield ca. 1944
from left: Jimmy, Charlie (app. age 8), Tom (app. age 16), and Arthur (app. age 14)
Photo courtesy of Tammie McCarroll
Tom, Jimmy, and Tammie McCarroll ca. 1968 / Photograph courtesy of Tammie McCarroll
Tammie McCarroll at age 6, ca. 1965
Photograph courtesy of Tammie McCarroll
Tom McCarroll at age 86, photographed by me at his home in Lenoir City in 2014

The musicianship you will find recordings is rare, authentic, and particular to a very special region. I knew nothing about old-time music prior to this appointment but find myself intoxicated by such resounding notes and tunes. I encourage you to explore both stories and songs alike. These recordings detail the specific history and tradition of musicians we work with intimately—as well as life in the Cumberland Plateau, past and present.