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About The Artist
Fans knew him as "The Georgia Cracker". "Cousin Paul" Crutchfield was born in Columbia, South Carolina, but grew up in Georgia.
During World War II, he was Assistant to the Adjutant General and Draft Executive of Georgia.
An old song folio of Cousin Paul's gives us an idea of what he was like or at least his approach to entertainment. He indicated he had played many of the different movie theater chains, including the Keith Vaudeville and Publix DeLuxe Theatres.
He told fans he liked "...clean, wholesome programs". At one time, he was an evangelistic singer in the South, and was a soloist and music director at several churches in Florida and Georgia.
He is said to be the originator of the "Old District or Country School" show that aired over radio staions. In fact, while he was at radio station KMA in Shenandoah, Iowa, he was the writer for the KMA Country School program from January to August 1, 1930. The booklet points out that when he left KMA, the program was the "...most entertaining, clean and wholesome program ever broadcast from any station."
On December 18, 1930, Cousin Paul did an unusual performance over radio. He sang 160 songs in sucession without stopping, never losing a beat, and all without having the words or music to guide him. Backing him up on this feat were Bernard Ruby and Earl King. Cousin Paul only took one hour and fifty-five minutes to sing all 160 songs.
His song folio indicates he spent three years at WSB in Atlanta, Georgia, but does not tell us what years those were. However, we can narrow that down a bit as the monthly KMA Guides carry mentions of him after his departure from Shenandoah. In the August 1944 issue, Doris Murphy told listeners that Cousin Paul and his wife Gretta had stopped by for a visit and appeared on one of the noon time programs, talking of the old times when he sang over KMA as part of the Earl May's Country School program. She mentions they were living in Atlanta, Georgia and Paul was a practicing attorney. She mentions him again in the February 1945 issue answering a listener inquiry.
On November 1, 1930, he accepted a call from Dick Savage of the Georgie Porgie Breakfast Food Company in Council Bluffs, Iowa to appear exclusively on their programs.
Credits & Sources