Get In The Groove


Jim Colegrove - 2004, photo by David Woo

Jim Colegrove
3 Quarter Dime

3 Quarter Dime

3 Quarter Dime - Cool Groove CD113

3 Quarter Dime Reviews from
Usenet's group:

I just got mine from Amazon and it is great, Jim! I appreciate that Travis Wammack is one of the dedicatees mentioned in the liner notes. You and he play with the same exuberance and intensity. The whole thing is well-designed. I like the photos-both old and new. Thanks!

—Marc Dashevsky

"3 Quarter Dime" arrived safe and sound today and it's a nice sounding mix of rock 'n' roll instrumentals, all of which I liked with the standout IMO being "Vigilante Hoedown".

I played the CD during my school run this afternoon and you will be pleased to know that your music received the thumbs up not only from the HARDEST audience to please on earth-i.e. the kids I take back & forth to school each day-but also my trusty sidekick Carol, the lady who looks after the children in transit for me. She asked me to say how much she liked the tune that reminded her of "Sleep Walk" (yes she's "that" old). :)

So good music, great package and nice pictures.

Cool grooves indeed!

Thank you James!

—Roger Ford

Actually I had *3* favorites, these 2 ("Vigilante Hoedown," "Wormburner") plus "Assisted Twister," though I must confess I completely missed the pun on "Twisted Sister."

And it took me about 12 hours to realize that "New Rough Riders Of A Dirty Age" was a takeoff on New Riders Of The Purple Sage. But I finally did get it.

And I never knew what a passionate punster you were, Jim!

Thanks so much for the CD.


I just received mine today, because Amazon was out of stock when I ordered it a couple of weeks ago. That's good.

Very nice job, Jim.

My favorites are "Assisted Twister," "Blazin' Stump," "Blue Gin," and "Vigilante Hoedown" and "Friday Night Buzz."

And it was nice to see Scotty Moore at the top of the dedicated list.

Thanks again, and thanks to Bruce for mentioning the CD.

—Steve Mc

That's it, just "WOW".

Every once in a third blue moon a guy runs into somebody that he might've known (or heard) in the past and never realized it.
I am impressed Mr. Colegrove. You have a very long and prolific contribution to the music world. One that I am just now getting a glimpse of.

I'm a big fan of Ian Tyson and his wife. Even though they predate most of my musical interests. Old Navajo Rug and Ambler Saddle can still get a woohoo out of me. :)

"Give Me Something' Fried" I have heard covered in lots of venues throughout the years. Bravo!

And thanks for all the good times over the last thirty years btw. :)

—Six String Stu


Imagine my surprise, then, when this CD arrived in my mailbox yesterday. Because 3 Quarter Dime, helpfully subtitled Rock 'n' Roll Instrumentals (truth in advertising!) is a throwback, all the way to the music Jim was playing at the beginning of his career. While his music has grown more song- and vocal-oriented over the years, this record is, quite simply, a love letter to the sound of the electric guitar. Susan Surftone's Shore, which I reviewed last year, reminded me of the continued vitality of this kind of music, as did the late Robin Sylar's Surfabilly project. Colegrove's foray into the genre, recorded at home with help from estimable tub-thumper Linda Waring (who once shared stages at the notorious Cellar clubs with John Nitzinger and the late Bugs Henderson) and his Lost Country bandmates David McMillan (steel guitar) and Rob Caslin (bass), is a veritable primer of classic styles -- an interested person who's new to this could learn a lot by researching the list of guitarists Colegrove cites in his liner notes—and heap big fun.

Opener "Chinese Launch" is a variation on the "What'd I Say" theme that's demented enough to have fit on Robin Sylar's decade-old Tricked Out disc. "Assisted Twister" features a wobbly whammy bar hook and dry-toned blues licks that hang ten on Ware's relentless rhythm, while the moody minor-key slow drag "Lost River" unfolds melodramatically, with a sinister-sounding undercurrent of baritone guitar. You can do the Pachuco hop to "Wooly Gully," of which Domingo Samudio would approve. On the title track, Caslin shadows Colegrove on the tortuous staccato line, then the leader overdubs a slower contrapuntal melody, while on "Bean Pot," Colegrove plays nifty harmonized lines that sound like the Allman Brothers' guitarists entertaining at a Gulf Coast Spring Break beach party over a beat that Ware borrowed from ZZ Top's "Under Pressure."

"Tree House Days" recycles the lush I-VI-IV-V chord progression from every song written between 1958 and 1962, with clouds of celestial steel courtesy of McMillan, leading into the hard-edged Freddy (not Freddie) King shuffle of "Blue Gin." "Vigilante Hoedown" has a bumpa-chicka beat worthy of Johnny Cash's Tennessee Two, but Colegrove plays a lot flashier than Luther Perkins ever thought about being. When the bari guitar comes in for the bridge, all bets are off. "Shadooka" almost sounds like a power pop song in search of a vocal; maybe Caslin could rework it for his other other band, Great American Novel?

3 Quarter Dime is heartily recommended to anyone who loves rock guitar and has an interest in what it sounded like before Mike Bloomfield and Jeff Beck showed up. In my perfect world that I know doesn't really exist, I'd love to see this band share a bill with Jim's Modern Art Museum coworker John Nuckels' dub outfit Wire Nest, or once-and-future-Nervebreaker Mike Haskins' like-minded Big Guns from Big D, or even young hotshots the Fungi Girls. Turn it up, open the windows, and who knows? You could get a party started.

The Stash Dauber Blog - Ken Shimamoto June, 2013

THIS GUY LOVES THE MUSIC !!! July 1, 2013 -
By Bruce Grossberg

Not many guys love the music as much as Jim Colegrove does. He's been doing it for over 50 years now. If you like the rock and roll guitar instrumentals of the 50s and early 60s from acts like the Ventures, Duane Eddy, Link Wray and the Virtues this album is for you. My personal favorites on the CD include "Wooly Gully," "Vigilante Hoedown" and "Wormburner," but all the tracks are very good.

Aah, SUCH GOOD ROCKING! August 22, 2013 -
By Wubbina Kiernan

Great dance music, great music while you're building your house, mowing your lawn, washing your dishes or chasing your sweetheart around the dinner table. Just sitting still to listen is difficult. Makes a great sound track.

I really appreciate your new recorded effort! You nailed the genre, vibe, the works and I admit to belly laughing a time or two! Linda is just a bitch-(I'm not talking gender here- drums!) If she had been around when this stuff was first happening, she would be in some hall of fame! It really does make me realize what an impact this all had at the time it came out. I came along when things had moved on some, but this stuff is the root of so much evil! Yes! I will be pulling out the Duane Eddy and Link Wray records again, but I will be listening to this one too. Great stuff, Jim-a great trip down memory lane for you, I know and a pleasure to hear for me and whoever gets to hear it. Thank you!

-Tom Reynolds, September 4, 2013 (in an e-mail. Fort Worth, Texas master guitarist)

Jim Colegrove & the New Rough Riders of a Dirty Age, '3 Quarter Dime'

Fort Worth singer-songwriter Jim Colegrove's musical pedigree stretches back decades, deep into Cowtown's storied past. (Colegrove has jammed with everyone from James Hinkle and the late Stephen Bruton to Allen Ginsberg.) He wears that artistic legacy lightly, continuing to record under his own name and with Lost Country. His latest LP, 3 Quarter Dime, is a full-tilt dose of fretboard fireworks, goosed with a healthy helping of '50s nostalgia and a hint of surf rock. The 13-track collection of instrumentals roars out of the gate with Chinese Launch - just try to keep your feet from tapping - and doesn't let up until the appropriately titled closer, Wormburner. Throw this Dime on and watch the sparks fly.

—Preston Jones,, 7-3-13

Jim Colegrove's 3 Quarter Dime "blasts the entire guitar instrumental world into the 21st century."

Here we go again. Fort Worth. I write about music all the time and I swear that a full one-quarter of what I write touches Fort Worth in one way or another. I wrote a piece about Space Opera, a band I thought was from Canada. Fort Worth. I spent years obsessing about Gypsy, a band from Minnesota but whose bass player grew up in and lives in Fort Worth. One of my all-time favorite session guitarists, Dean Parks, is from Fort Worth. Another, Stephen Bruton. Fort Worth. If I was going to write a list of my favorite musicians, many would be from Fort Worth. What is it about this town that spawned artists like Bill Ham and Scott Fraser and so many more? What is it that attracted so many others? I have no idea but I can say that Fort Worth is a lazy writer's dream. I could have started writing about the music of that area years ago and wouldn't be close to running out of material yet. Because music in Fort Worth, Texas never stops.
It hasn't yet anyway. I know because I received another drop in the mail recently, this time from an old Ohio boy who now lives there (and has for some time). If you're from, ahem, Fort Worth, you know him as the guy who flies the Ohio State colors during bowl season. His name is Jim Colegrove and when he moved there back in 1974, he planned on a short visit to play in a band with Stephen Bruton. He's still there. I knew of him but didn't start paying real attention until he formed The Juke Jumpers with Stephen's brother Sumter, a band I revere to this day. They boogied and rocked and rolled with the best.

Old' Jim has been knocking around Fort Worth for some, what, thirty years? Playing the clubs. Recording himself and others. Working his guitar-picking ass off, basically, and loving every minute of it. He loves the blues and boogie and country and every other genre that town embraces and he plays it well, but like all musicians he yearns to play what he used to play-what he started out playing-rock 'n' roll. Instrumental rock 'n' roll.
So he started messing around in the studio a few years ago, laying down tracks here and there with a handful of musicians he enjoys working with (Linda Waring, David McMillan and Rob Caslin). When they finally put the two-year long sessions to rest, they came out with thirteen instrumentals to rival all of the hits from the late-fifties and early-sixties.

I could tell this was a winner from the outstart when "Chinese Launch" started with what is supposedly a Chinese countdown/chant of some kind before tearing into a manic semi-surf ripoff of The Surfaris (remember "Wipe Out"?) which gives way to a whole string of instrumentals which could easily have been hits around '60 to '65. You know. The days when instrumentals were king?

This will bring back memories of the good old days when you cruised the gut in your buddy's '55 Chevy or your cousin's hot rod. Memories of the malt shop and the drive-ins, one serving food, the other fantasy. Crew-cuts with fenders, buzzcuts, camel hair sweaters and pony tails.

"3 Quarter Dime" is a veritable destruction derby of an album, one song slamming into another and all fueled by riffs from the past. Think everything from Dick Dale to early Wailers (the band from Tacoma), Duane Eddy to The Astronauts, Santo & Johnny to The Ventures and you would be close. Colegrove and his band of musicians from the real era of Grease and not that fake Hollywood portrayal slam-bang their way from front to back, guitar immersed in deep reverb helped along by plenty and a half of tremolo. And dig those drum riffs and pounding bass lines. Sandy Nelson would be proud.

But pardon my manners. Colegrove, it seems, doesn't just play the music on the album. He lives it. Or did live it. He was in a band back in Ohio called Teddy & The Rough Riders and had a hit with an instrumental track titled "Tomahawk" around 1960. Put out a few other singles too. From there, it was on to other bands as well as putting in time behind the boards in various studios. The guy knows his stuff.
His other successes? He has played and recorded with Bo Grumpus and Jolliver Arkansaw (so what if you've never heard of them-you haven't heard of 90% of the bands from the old days) as well as Great Speckled Bird (if you haven't heard of THEM, you are sadly unschooled). His greatest triumph, to my mind, has been the work he did with The Juke Jumpers, released on the band's own label, Amazing Records (their motto, "If it's a hit, it's Amazing!", cracks me up every time I hear or read it). They swing and boogie like few others. (If you want to pick any of them up, start with their 1980-1981 CD. It's a killer!)

This album ranks right up there with the Juke Jumpers' albums. Swear to God, if you're not ready to don the old tight T-shirt, grease back that hair and roll that pack o' smokes up in the shirt sleeve, you didn't live those days. Like Mr. Gasser & The Weirdos, Jim Colegrove & the New Rough Riders of a Dirty Age are havin' a blast. And no, I'm not kiddin'. That's the band's full name!
—Frank Gutch, No Depression, July 23, 2013

One of the coolest guitar instrumental albums of 2013 is the CD release of 3 Quarter Dime by Texas guitar slinger Jim Colegrove. Credited to Jim Colegrove & The New Rough Riders Of A Dirty Age and released on the TX-based Cool Groove Records label, the 13 track CD starts off rockin' and just rocks harder and faster. Some of these newly recorded guitar sessions echo back to that fabled 1959/1960 era when instrumental groups like The Ventures and legends like Link Wray and Dick Dale ruled the guitar world. Several of Jim's buddies from way back flesh out the tracks including drummer Linda Waring. Commenting on returning to the guitar instrumental sound in 2013, Jim explains, 'I've enjoyed what I perceive as a successful life in music in that I was able to play and record what I loved. That I did the current record at this time was largely due to the fact that I wanted to go full circle in case I was at the end of it all. That and I knew there was an interest in this kind of instrumental rock 'n' roll by a certain segment of music lovers. So I started working on it a couple of years ago.' If you close your eyes and put on this CD, it almost sounds like the early 1960's again. The 3 Quarter dime CD liner notes offers some key history behind Jim and his extensive career in the music world and if you go the Cool Groove web site you can read some really eye opening facts and figures about Jim's long and colorful history in the rock / guitar world. The whole instrumental guitar movement is a great way to experience musical nostalgia but on 3 Quarter Dime, Jim Colegrove blasts the entire guitar instrumental world into the 21st century.

—Robert Silvertstein, September 2013, MusicWeb Express 3000

...This one is a lot of fun and is dedicated to a slew of guitarists from the late '50s and '60s who influenced Jim's playing-you'd certainly recognize their names. I believe they'd all be proud of what Jim's put together here! This is a very cohesive set of rockin' guitar instrumentals and is right up there with the Rondo Hattan title recently reviewed. "Blazin' Stump" rocks and also has a little funky edge, too. Might be my favorites but it's hard to pick a favorite—they're all great!...Really, this is everything you would hope for in a comeback from an early '60s instrumental artist. He wasn't gone but has returned to his early styles. This is right along the top of my favorite instrumental CDs from the modern era and is highly recommended!

—Marc Bristol, Blue Suede News #100 summer/fall 2013

Jim Colegrove’s talent is as big as his résumé is long. His session work includes albums by Todd Rundgren, John Hall, Bobby Charles, the Legendary Stardust Cowboy, and even Allen Ginsberg. Most of that was on bass (also his instrument as member of Ian & Sylvia’s legendary Great Speckled Bird), but his first instrument was guitar, with his Ohio-based teen instrumental combo, Teddy and the Rough Riders. After moving to Fort Worth, Texas, in the mid ’70s, he returned to guitar playing (and singing), forming the jump blues Juke Jumpers. More recently, he’s concentrated on his country quartet, Lost Country, and his Cool Groove label.

Here, he returns to the music of his youth — "when the rock and roll guitar instrumental was in its golden period." There’s more than a jigger of blues in Colegrove’s rock, with Freddie King’s influence mingling with echoes of Link Wray, Duane Eddy, and the Ventures. "Assisted Twister" gets its name from its chord progressions — "The Twist" in the verses and "Let’s Twist Again" in the choruses. The fact that the spooky ballad "Lost River" (which Colegrove wrote in ’61 while with the Rough Riders; think “Werewolf” by the Frantics) is right at home with his recent compositions illustrates the timelessness of the genre and this outing.

— Dan Forte, Vintage Guitar Magazine, November 2013
Vintage Guitar Magazine

This is a name you might not know. but Jim Colegrove has a fine rock instrumental pedigree. Collectors will be well aware of Teddy & The Rough Riders for their 1960 single "Tomahawk" c/w "Thunderhead" and Jim was not only the group's lead guitarist but he also wrote both sides of that single as well its follow-up "Pathfnder" / "A Dream Come True." He continued to play live and on session throughout the ensuing years, most recently with his current group Lost Country, and he still has the RI bug so hence this all-instrumental project. Jim is joined by his Lost Country mates David McMillan (guitar) and Rob Caslin (bass) along with Linda Waring on drums for this beefy rockin' set. Things get off to a rip roaring start on "Chinese Launch," a fast moving rocker with bright lead work and fine drumming, that's followed by an infectious toe-tapper in "Assisted Twister." There are plenty more rockin' gems too, such as the soaring fast-driving rocker "Bean Pot" with its tap-along beat and catchy hook and the slip-slidin' 12-bar "Friday Night Buzz." There's a great riffin' rocker in the incredibly catchy "Shadooka" that features several neat solos, while "Wormburner" is a fast grinding l2-bar with its sliding swoops and grumbling bass. Three tracks add variety, one being "Vigilante Hoedown" - a jaunty finnger-picked country rocker with a deep and dirty buzzin' solo. The other two are slower numbers and are very tasty indeed. The sleepwalkin' ballad "Tree House Days" has some nifty note bending and tasty background steel. It's a real charmer, but the pick of the bunch is "Lost River." This is a fabulously moody slowie with a great, spacey atmosphere that goes back to the days of the original Rough Riders. They recorded a version that was never released, maybe one day...

—Alan Taylor
Pipeline Magazine-Winter 2013 (#93)

However, unquestionably of most interest to us is the superb instrumental CD he released in 2013 titled 3 Quarter Dime (see Pipeline 93). This is a homage to the music of his youth as well as a tribute to his old band, and as such it is sub-titled The New Rough Riders Of A Dirty Age. Featured on the CD are drummer Linda Waring, guitarist David McMillan and Rob Caslin on bass, the latter two also being members of Lost Country. Linda gets a knockout sound on her snare drum which I would kill for, and she plays with great skill and energy which really drives the band along. The amazing thing about Jim’s production is that he has managed to achieve an authentic '60s sound—I had to double-check that these were new recordings and not excavated cuts from the past.

There are many great tracks on the CD - Lost River is hugely dramatic and is a tune that Jim previously played with The Rough Riders. It actually reminds me just a little of Richie Podolor’s surf stuff that he recorded as Richie Allen & The Pacific Surfers. Wooly Gully is a fun version of Wooly Bully which, as Jim points out, is based on the little-known original version by Big Bo & The Arrows and called Hully Gully, Now. No wonder the hitmaker was known as Sam The Sham! There are loads of really very good tracks - the rockabilly bum of Blazing Stump with Jim’s madcap soloing; the melancholic Tree House Days which suggests Santo & Johnny; the R&B shuffle of Blue Gin; the swinging country styled Vigilante Hoedown; the tuff, gritty riffing on Wormburner and, best of all, Chinese Launch which blasts off in true rocket fashion. It is all great stuff and the CD is still available from Amazon.

—Dave Burke
Pipeline Magazine-Autumn 2016 (#102)

3 Quarter Dime MP3s:
Blue Gin


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