The Gully Jumpers would have not sounded as if they were leaping over gullies without the solid clawhammer thrust of banjoist Roy Hardison, no matter how strong the rhythm playing of guitarists Burt Hutcherson and frontman Paul Warmack, or how spirited the fiddling of ace old-time player Charlie Arrington. In the '20s in Nashville, with the entire concept of a national audience for country music on the radio beginning to come up with the dawn, Hardison was one of the rays of musical sunshine around town, a solid and dependable banjo player whose every flick of the wrist was straight ahead of the deep well of Appalachian musical history. Paul Warmack and the Gully Jumpers began recording in 1927 and were soon one of the top attractions on the Grand Old Opry. As the years went on, the Gully Jumpers remained a part of the Opry program, an increasingly smaller nibble of hillbilly old-timers presented as if the management actually wished wax models of the performers had been available instead. In 1960, the Gully Jumpers were finally told to go find other ditches to leap over, but by then, banjo master Hardison was long gone. Hutcherson was the only original member of the group left by the time of the final Opry performance. Leader Warmack, a musically talented car mechanic, died in 1954.
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