Gayle Griffith was getting attention in Greenwood, Indiana even though he was
only fourteen years old back in 1954. The son of Gladys and Harold
Griffith was already recording for the Emerald
Recording company with the LMC trio out of Indianapolis.
That recording session got national notice. George D. Hay was publisher
of Pickin' and Singin' News out of Nashville back in 1954 and featured Gayle
in a small feature. Bobby Gregory noted the recording session in his column
for Country Song Roundup as well.
The two recordings he made with the group were written by Charles A. Hager
of Indianapolis according to a 1954 article. Mr. Hager was also the rhythm
guitarist for the group. He had help with the music from Mrs. Oran L. Richardson.
His grandparents, Mr.a nd Mrs. Roy Logan, boosted Gayles musical interests
by gave him and his family a piano when he was just four years old. It didn't
take him long to learn to play the piano to accompany his singing.
During the summer of 1954, it was said that Gayle appeared several times at the Shady Acres
Ranch that was located near Mulberry, Indiana with Curly Myers and the Ranch Boys. He
also appeared in front of the audiences at Bill Monroe's Brown County Jamboree in
Bean Blossom, Indiana.
His first television appearance was on AUgust 14, 1954 as a guest on Shorty Sheehan's "Hillbilly
Heaven" show that was popular on WISH-TV in Indianapolis. He later appeared on
Uncle Bob Hardy's show, the "Hayloft Frolic" on August 26, 1954 over in Bloomington,
In October of 1954, he appeared at the Lyric Theatre with his group, performing
his hit recording "Rockin' and Knockin'".
Tom Edwards wrote in his contribution to Country and Western Jamboree as part
of their regional roundups that Gayle had appeared over in the Cleveland, Ohio
area a couple of times and was popular with the audiences with just the one
release on Emerald. Tom noted Gayle was a "...personable young man with a wealth
Tom Edwards reported in late 1955 that Gayle appeared with a number of other artists
such as Porter Wagoner, Charlie Gore, Herb and Kay Adams along with the Junior
Kentucky Briarhoppers at the Circle Theater for two appearances in early December 1955.
Gayle had a sister named Sharon Diane.
Gayle was a student at the Indiana School for the Blind since the age of seven.
He would stay at the school during the week, then visit his parents' home
Credits & Sources
- Pickin' and Singin' News; Vol. II no. 22; November 30, 1954;
Fountain Publications, Inc.; George D. Hay, Publisher; 804 Church Street, Nashville, TN
- Cowboy Songs; No. 40; April 1955; American Folk Publications, Inc.;
- Country and Western Jamboree; Vol. 1 No. 4; June 1955; Country and Western Jamboree, Inc.
- Country and Western Jamboree; Vol. 1 No. 6; August 1955; Country and Western Jamboree, Inc.
- Country and Western Jamboree; Vol. 1 No. 10; August 1955; Country and Western Jamboree, Inc.