This American country group looked like model acceptance folk music for many country groups in abroad. (Rangers, Greenhorns in Czechoslovakia, etc.)
The history of Minstrels started in turning point 50-teen and 60-teen, when young guitarist and singer Randy Sparks established own music group. There was also his wife (Jackie Miller). In the 1961 the establishing was ended and group had 10 members (Randy Sparks, Jackie Miller, Nick Woods – The Kingston Trio, John Forsha, Karol Dugan, Jerry Yester – The Inn Group, Billy Cudmore, Terry Cudmore, Dolan Ellis, Art Podell – Greenwich Village duo Art&Paul).
The name of the group was derived from Christy’s Minstrels, performing institution form the middle of 19-teen century. This institution was founded by Edwin Pearce Christy in Philadelphia. They traveled through the country and helped to popularize the Negro spirituals.
They started with Negro spirituals and already in next year they recorded the first album Presenting The New Christy Minstrels : “Exciting New Folk Chorus” for Columbia records. The record studio didn’t believe them, but the success overcame their expectations. This record was nominated on Grammy (1962). This Minstrels were the most familiar group in US. It was Sparks, who created group as school chorus. The group was booked onto TV show (The Andy Williams Show). This show had a millions of American TV viewers.
In 1963 they recorded new album “Ramblim'” with famous song “Green, Green”. All this album came from collaboration of McGuire and Sparks. In these years, The New Christy Minstrels was the most popular from their history. They played concerts in clubs, in colleges and earned more money than ever before. Everything turned around them.
The first person, who exited from the Minstrels was just Randy Sparks (May 1963). It was hard shot, but he chose McGuire as the leader of the group. It was very logical decision. At that time the group worked hard six days a week.
During 60-teen also many interprets went through the group. For example Kenny Rogers, Kim Carnes and Dave Ellington).
In 70-teen the popularity of Minstrels began to go down when interests of country music averted from traditional to pop form. The Minstrels stopped their shows in 1971 and to 1978 only their records of some famous selection were published. The time showed that that was exactly that right what inspired further interprets and groups.
The New Christy Minstrels had excellent vocal, which acceptance form traditional American and Irish song and classic folk music. Their addition is unforgettable.
Past members also were :
- Kenny Rogers
- Gene Clark – The Byrds’
- Kim Carnes
- Larry Ramos – Association’s
- Terry Williams
- Baxter Taylor – The Wayfares Trio
- Barry McGuire – Eve of Destruction
- Mike Settle
- Thelma Camacho
- Keith Barbour
- Dolan Ellis.
Three Wheels on my Wagon