Mother Maybelle Carter: Wildwood Flower - from Mother Maybelle Carter (1973, Columbia)
This is a really interesting old LP recorded in February 1973 at the House of Cash in Hendersonville, Tennessee, with a formidable cast of musicians, including Fred Carter Jr. on electric guitar, Pete Drake on pedal steel, Charlie McCoy on harmonica and of course Mother Maybelle on autoharp and guitar.
Many of the tracks, including this one, feature in-studio banter between Mother Maybelle and the other musicians, with so much joking and relaxing you get the feeling they were shuffling into the kitchen between songs for turkey sandwiches and beers.
On this track, Mother Maybelle says she’d “like to try to do it” on her autoharp first, before starting in with her guitar. Well she tries it on her autoharp alright. Nails it, is what she does. Then she begins picking a mean guitar, and the rest of the guys join in. This is like country music instrumentation 101. Study it. Mother Maybelle really was something else.