About the Group
A group with quite a legacy of a career, The Down Homers, had some
eventual individual stars, too. The group was organized in 1935
by Shorty COok and Guy Campbell.
First, there was Everett "Shorty" Cook, a native of Millersburg, IN.
He got his career started in 'minstrel' entertainment. His parents
had a bit of musical influence on him, too - his mom was a pianist
and his dad was a celloist. As part of the Down Homers, Shorty did
a variety of tasks, singing lead, baritone, tenor or bass; played
the Spanish or hawaiian guitars. He was also a songwriter.
Guy Campbell came from the Blue Hills of Virginia. Later on, his
family moved to Oklahoma. His dad was a classical violinist and that
was an early influence on Guy, but he liked the songs of the range
so much, that he dropped his classical music in favor of the country
music he loved. In addition to playing the fiddle for the Down Homers,
he played the guitar and bass and was the third man in the trio numbers.
Another member of the Down Homers back then was the fellow from
Lenoir City, Tennessee, transplanted to Massachusetts, Kenny Roberts.
He started his career on radio while he was still in high school.
His yodeling songs got him a lot of acclaim and was featured over the
Blue Network at one time. In March of 1944, Kenny won the "Eastern
States Yodeling Championship". He played just about all the stringed
instruments, and harmonica, too.
From Ottumwa, Iowa came Lloyd Cornell. He started his radio career
when he was 16 at his home town station. His first professional
gig as an entertainer came after he graduated from high school was
in St. Joseph, MO. From that point, he then migrated to other radio
stations in Waterloo, IA; Des Moines, IA; Grand Island, NE;
and Ft. Wayne, IN. He was also a bit of a songwriter and was said
to have made a number of recordings.
Timeline and Trivia Notes
Group Members included:
- Everett "Shorty" Cook
- Guy Campbell
- Kenny Roberts
- Lloyd Cornell
Credits & Sources
- Deluxe Edition Down Homers; M. M. Cole Publishing Co.;
Chicago, IL; ca 1942.