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Brother Dave Gardner

Spoken Word

David Gardner (June 11, 1926 - September 22, 1983), known as Brother Dave Gardner, was a U.S. comedian and singer. A Tennessee native, Gardner studied drumming, beginning at age 13. After a one-semester term as a Southern Baptist ministerial student at Union University in his hometown of Jackson, Tennessee, he began a musical career as a drummer and occasional vocalist. After a pair of demo singles for Decca Records around 1956, he had a 1958 Top-20 hit on OJ Records with White Silver Sands. It was his comedic routines between songs, however, that brought him to the attention of RCA Records artist & producer Chet Atkins. The eventual result was a comedy album interspersed with a couple of songs - Rejoice, Dear Hearts! (1959 or 1960), which propelled Brother Dave into the national eye, along with the first of several appearances on national television talk/variety shows such as The Tonight Show. Next to Homer And Jethro, the most successful Southern-derived comedian was undoubtedly Brother Dave Gardner. In the late '50s and into the mid-'60s, Gardner's albums found themselves ensconsed in record collections in far more urbane and Northerly locales than one would suspect, and his style was instantly influential and widely imitated. Variously described as a "Southern Lenny Bruce" or "Billy Graham (2) with a sense of humor," Gardner's best routines still sound fresh and original today, a testament to his off-kilter genius. There was much, much more to this small-statured stand-up comic than your average hillbilly plowboy set of wheezy jokes; Gardner may just very well have been the true innovative genius of classy Southern humor. An arrest for marijuana possession in 1962 curtailed his visibility on television. Then, it seemed, changing public tastes (i.e., the falling out-of-favor of 'beatnik'-style comedy), coupled with Gardner's holding onto his same performing style, resulted in a similar fading of his recording career. After six albums for RCA Victor Records, he made two for Capitol Records, and then others for lesser labels. He had another legal problem over tax-evasion charges in the 1970s, which his son helped clear up. Brother Dave had a role as a Southern preacher in the 1978 made-for-TV film Big Bob Johnson's Fantastic Speed Circus. He was cast in a B-grade movie, and was just beginning work on it at the time of his death. Gardner was twice married: his first wife, Millie, preceded him in death, and he was married to his second wife, Judy, at the time of his death. He had two children from his first marriage—son Dave II (deceased, 1999) and daughter Candace.

  • Spoken Word
  • Rock
  • Jazz
  • Folk
  • World
Popular Tracks   
Rejoice, Dear Hearts, Pt. 1 on Rejoice, Dear Hearts by Brother Dave Gardner
Part 1 on Aint That Weird? by Brother Dave Gardner
Part 1: When You're Smiling (The Whole World Smiles With You) / You're My Everything on Kick Thy Own Self by Brother Dave Gardner
Part 2: Lover on Kick Thy Own Self by Brother Dave Gardner
Rejoice, Dear Hearts, Pt. 2 on Rejoice, Dear Hearts by Brother Dave Gardner
Part 1: I'm Sitting On Top Of The World / Swanee on Rejoice, Dear Hearts! by Brother Dave Gardner
Part 2 on Aint That Weird? by Brother Dave Gardner
Part 2: What Am I Living For? / White Silver Sands on Rejoice, Dear Hearts! by Brother Dave Gardner

Track list and 30sec audio provided by


Title Artist Year Type
The Very Best OfBrother Dave Gardner1999Compil.
In PersonBrother Dave Gardner1980Album
The Motorcycle StoryBrother Dave Gardner1980Album
Motorcycle Story (Part 1)Brother Dave Gardner1970Single
Out FrontBrother Dave Gardner1970Album
Hip-OcrocyBrother Dave Gardner1966Album
It Don't Make No DifferenceBrother Dave Gardner1964Album
The Best Of Dave GardnerBrother Dave Gardner1964Compil.
It's All In How You Look At "It"Brother Dave Gardner1964Album
All Seriousness AsideBrother Dave Gardner1963Album
It's Bigger Than The Both Of UsBrother Dave Gardner1963Album
Did You Ever?Brother Dave Gardner1962Album
Coward At The Alamo / You Are My LoveBrother Dave Gardner1961Single
Ain't That WeirdBrother Dave Gardner1961Album
Kick Thy Own SelfBrother Dave Gardner1960Album
Kick Thy Own SelfBrother Dave Gardner1960Album
Rejoice, Dear Hearts!Brother Dave Gardner1960Album
Slick SlacksBrother Dave Gardner1958Single
Hop Along Rock / All By MyselfBrother Dave Gardner1958Single
Hop Along Rock / All By MyselfBrother Dave Gardner1958Single
Mad Witch / Love Is My BusinessBrother Dave Gardner1957Single
White Silver SandsBrother Dave Gardner1957Single
Traveling By The MindBrother Dave GardnerSingle
It Don't Make No DifferenceBrother Dave GardnerSingle
Rejoice, Dear Hearts! / Kick Thy Own SelfBrother Dave GardnerCompil.
Fat Charlie / White Silver SandsBrother Dave GardnerSingle
Coward At The AlamoBrother Dave GardnerSingle
External Links
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