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Ramblin’ Tommy Scott

July 28, 1976 OH167 235 min.


Country performer. Born June 24, 1917. Full name: Tommy Lee Scott. AKA: Ramblin’ Tommy Scott. Career active 1930s-2000s. Leader of what he calls “America’s Last Real Medicine Show.” Started career as a medicine show performer in the 1930s. A television pioneer, in 1946 he filmed fifty-two quarter-hour shows for syndication. Recorded for several labels, including King, Bullet, and Four Star. Briefly appeared on the Grand Ole Opry as a ventriloquist.

Interview Summary

1976 July 28
(3 hours, 55 minutes)
Entertainer Ramblin’ Tommy Scott talks about his experiences as a medicine show performer. Discussion includes his family history; local musical influences during his childhood; his start as a medicine show entertainer, including work as a ventriloquist; the techniques of a successful medicine show; medicine shows as a starting ground for early performers and later forms of entertainment; comments on early medicine showmen, including Doc Chamberlain; comments on the medicine of the medicine shows; his early radio career; working with Charlie Monroe; working with Stringbean; the development of his medicine, HERB-O-LAC; the development of his own medicine show; performers who appeared on his show, including Uncle Dave Macon, Ray Whitley, Tim McCoy, and Clyde Moody; his movie work and experiences in Hollywood; his recording career; the Ramblin’ nickname; and comments on his experiences managing a medicine show.

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