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Ardis Wells
Born:  July 10, 1917
Died:  February 15, 2013

About The Artist

Ms. Wells was known as "The Yodeling Sweetheart". She became nationally known when her recording of "Selling Chances" on the North Star label hit the charts. She had quite a background in entertainment that led her to the music business.

She was born into a family of show people and follwed the circuses and carnivals for many years. Then, she became the "The Yodeling Sweetheart" as part of a western band. The Cowboy Songs (Dec. 1957) article quotes Ardis as saying she had to do quite a bit in her career. She said she had to swim, wrestle, dance, ride a horse, design clothes, ride elephants and even do trapeze tricks. Later, she would write music, play the ukelele, bass fiddle, accordion, electric guitar to go along with her singing and yodeling talents. It was also reported she could do a bit of wrestling. She reportedly wrestled profesional for over two years and actually won 21 straight matches in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Around March of 1956, she formed her own all-girl western band, known as the "Rhythm Ranch Gals". (The group members are listed below.) The got themselves a bit of a name as one of the better western bands in the country at the time. They appeared nightly in the cocktail lounge of the Flame Supper Club in Minneapolis. On top of that, they also appeared on KEVE each Saturday and made a variety of personal appearances in the Twin Cities area.

She was married to a country singer, Jimmy Wells who worked with 'his Dakota Roundup Gang'.

At one time she was recording for the North Star record label, and had some success with "Selling Chances On My Heart" b/w "What Makes The World Go Around".

Timeline and Trivia Notes

Group Members included:

  • Ardis Wells, electric rhythm guitar, vocals
  • Jan North, accordion
  • Fern Dale, banjo
  • Patti Williams, bass and guitar

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