Inductees Archive

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Chuck Wagon Gang

The legacy of The Chuck Wagon Gang began in the early 1930s with the founding of the group by D.P. “Dad” Carter, who called the first group The Carter Quartet, made up of Dad and three of his nine children: Rose, Anna and Jim. Appearances on local radio shows in Texas brought their music to the attention of record executives, though their earliest recording session for ARC produced country singles rather than gospel. As the years passed they gradually became more gospel-oriented and by the early ’40s had switched over completely. The group broke up for the duration of World War II. Afterward, they reunited and began recording again in 1948 for Columbia, where the group was at one time the best-selling American artist recording for the label.

 

During the early ’50s the band underwent the first of many subsequent membership changes when Jim left in 1953 and was replaced by Howard Gordon who remained with the group until he died in 1967. Another brother, Roy, also joined and sang bass in Jim’s stead. Dad Carter retired in 1955 and was at first replaced by Eddie Carter. In the late ’50s non-family members such as Alynn Billodeau, Patrick McKeehan, Ronnie Page and Ronnie Crittenden spent time with the Chuck Wagon Gang. In September 1955, the Gang was presented with their first Gold record for the single “I’ll Shout and Shine.” Through it all, the band kept touring part-time, including appearances at Carnegie Hall and the Hollywood Bowl, and making records. By 1975, the Chucks had made 408 masters. About that time they stopped recording for a time and underwent more personnel changes.

 

They resumed recording around 1978 and mostly worked on the Copperfield label. The Chuck Wagon Gang continued on in a similar vein until 1987 when they once again became a full – time band with new members joining the last of the Carters, Roy and his sister Ruth Ellen Yates. In 1984 Dad Carter, who had died in 1963, was posthumously inducted into the Gospel Music Hall of Fame.

 

Induction Year

1998

 

Formation

1935

 

Original Members

  • Dave “Dad” Carter
  • Lola Carter
  • Ernest Carter
  • Effie Carter

 

Colleagues and Contemporaries

  • Wally Fowler
  • Rev. J. Bazzell Mull

 

Significant Songs

  • “The Son Hath Made Me Free”
  • “I’ll Shout and Shine”

 

Video

The Chuck Wagon Gang singing “Echoes From The Burning Bush”