About The Artist
The Lone Pine Cowboy became a rather well known name as a radio singer of old time cowboy songs. He was 17 years old when asked to replace Eddie Reed on radio station WHAY in 1951. This offer came from Eddie himself who chose young Flagg as his replacement and made arrangements with the station management for Flagg to work out the remainder of a 13 week contract he had just signed. Reed ws going through a divorse and claimed he needed a rest.
Flagg was given an old guitar by his aunt Dorothy when he was 12 years old and by the time he was 17, he was a rather accomplished musician due to tutoring by Eddie Reed and other friends.
He appeared on radio stations in Connecticut and Massachusets as well as Ohio and did guest appearances on the WWVA Jamboree.
The Gordon Talent Agency was the prime booking agent in Connecticut who booked the biggest names in show business and were often joked about by the local entertainers who claimed with tongue in cheek, they were sought after by this agency.
One day by accident, Flagg happened to find himself in the lobby of the Palace Building in Hartford and noticed the office of The Gordon Agency. It was a Saturday and the office door was open so he peeked in. A blonde lady seated at the desk greeted him and invited him in. She introduced herself as Ruth Gordon and was amused to learn this young man had a radio program and sang cowboy songs. She jotted down his phone number.
Some weeks later he received a call from Mrs. Gordon to do a show for Westinghouse Appliances in a large department store in Hartford. G. Fox was the name of the store and Flagg was emplyed there as a light bulb changer. He asked for time off for the week and accepted the job. Some of his friends strongly doubted that this young inexperienced cowboy singer actually got a booking from the agency that booked such acts as Frank Sinatra and many other big names in show business.
Flagg went on to develop his own band, naming his group, Bill Falgg and the Prairie Drifters and began playing night clubs in Hartford. In 1952, he was introduced to a hillbilly type music that would eventually be called bluegrass by Jody Gibson and in 1953 he combined his music with the new beat of rock and roll and named it "rockabilly." Flagg said it was the guitar style of his lead man, John Sligar, who really defined the sound of rockabilly.
Tetra Records of New York heard of this new music and immediately signed him to a contract where he composed and recorded two classing songs that went into the charts. "Go Cat Go" and "Guitar Rock," which gave him international recognition. he can now be found in the Rockabilly Hall of Fame.
Credits & Sources
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