I remember as if it were yesterday the first reel to reel tape machine or tape recorder that we had for sale. They had just come out in a desk top model and my dad purchased one for a floor model, so customers could see and hear it operate and he would purchase one for them if they wanted to purchase one.
We kids had so much fun using it; we would record our customers and then play it back to them so that they could hear how their voice sounded on tape.
We had two customers that could really sing, as they had sung for us before we ever got the recording machine. We couldn't wait until they came in to pay on their bill so that we could get a recording of them.
The first person was E. Chandler, who with a great manager could have been a great singer. She had a great voice and she could yodel as well. My dad was the only one that she would sing for so when she came in we had set the machine under the counter and we got my dad to ask her to sing one of his favorite songs.
After she heard herself singing she wanted to purchase the recording machine. My dad explained that this one was a floor model but he would pick her one up when he went back to Atlanta.
She was the first person in our town to own a reel to reel recorder.
The other customer lived out in Banks County and she only came into town on the first of the month. Ms. Rucker sang in her church and she would put so much feeling in her singing that it seemed like you could see and feel the words that she sang. We wondered if the recorder could record it as well as she could sing. Well we would just have to wait and see when she came in.
The first of the month finally came around and sure enough like clock work she came in to pay on her bill. After she had made her payment my dad asked her to sing us one of her favorite songs. She sand to us "Standing On The Promises" and it surely sounded great. When we played it back to her she exclaimed that if she ever heard that sound in the dark that she would run for cover.
It really didn't sound bad, it was just the first time that she had ever heard her own voice after it was recorded.
We tried to sell her one but she said, chile I ain't got no electricity, I thought you kids knew that. We then remembered that she had just purchased the month before a wood burning kitchen range that she cooked on and it had a tank for keeping her water hot as well.