Carl T. Sprague

Carl T. Sprague was one of the first cowboys on record, paving the way for such fine rangeland singers as Jules Allen, the Cartwright Brothers, and Harry McClintock. He was born in Houston and spent time as a youth involved in ranching and farming; the cowboy songs he performed were authentic, learned around late-night campfires. After graduating college in 1922, he began occasionally playing on radio, and was inspired to record after hearing Vernon Dalhart's"The Prisoner's Song." Sprague went to Camden, NJ, in 1925 and cut his debut recordings "When the Work's All Done This Fall" and "Bad Companions"; both of the cowboy tunes became quite successful, and he continued recording for Victor through 1929. In the '30s he worked several different jobs after settling down permanently in Bryan, TX, but did return to performing during the folk revival years. ~ Sandra Brennan

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