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Russell, Charlie

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Origin: South Nelson, Miramichi, New Brunswick - Woodstock, New Brunswick

Charlie Russell Charlie Russell was born on July 11, 1937 in Nelson-Miramichi. He came from a musical family. He began playing the harmonica at the age of nine and soon graduated to guitar and accordion. He sang and performed around his home town for years. As a teenager he helped form a dance band called “The Gators”. His first professional appearance came in 1958 when he played guitar behind folksinger Alan Mills who was giving a concert during the Miramichi Folk Song Festival.

In 1966, Charlie entered and won the Maine-Maritimes Hootenay Championship in Woodstock . He was singing the satirical folksong, “Duffy's Hotel”. Charlie was to make an enviable reputation with satirical songs.

His debut as a disc jockey came in 1969 while working as comptroller of radio station CJCJ in Woodstock . He took over the shift when one of the DJ's left and continued doing this as well as his comptroller's job until 1983. During this period, he did a great deal to promote Canadian country music artists and in 1975 received the first Country DJ Of The Year for Canada award.

About this time he began to be recognized for his satirical song writing. He wrote and recorded “The Bricklin”. While the car failed, the song became a hit. Other hits include “On Parliament Hill”, and “Let's Bring the Ponies Back”. He has written more than 50 songs. A learned paper on “Goodtime Charlie and the Bricklin” was presented at the Canadian Historical Association in 1977.

Charlie's no longer a DJ, but he's still writing songs, and plans to do more performing and recording.



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