Willie & The String Poppers

Globeville, Colorado’s Willie & The String Poppers were Willie Lewis, Mike Montoya, Eddie Valdez, Little Joey Sanchez, Donnie Montoya & Vic Svenson. Prior to the String Poppers, there was an even earlier lineup called The Four Unknowns.


Little Joey Sanchez of the String Poppers.


Willie & Eddie Valdez of the String Poppers

The String Poppers are probably the most historically important group on the label as they are the earliest to release a record and had a unique, primitive sound that is impossible to replicate. Willie Lewis is currently digging through old String Poppers master tapes and has uncovered a vast number of unreleased gems.

There is even a tape of The String Poppers playing live at Georgia’s Place, an old mortuary turned into a club at 12th & Kalamath in Denver. Songs included Honky Tonkin’, Tongue Tied Jill & Sunglasses After Dark.

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The first release on Rock-A-Billy Records (with the aid of Dave Stidman of Denver’s own Wax Trax Records) was R-101, The Rockin’ Blues. A one off 45 turned into four releases on Rock-A-Billy.


R-101: The Rockin’ Blues / What Ever Happened To That Rock & Roll?

Give it a listen:
R-101: The Rockin’ Blues:

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R-102: Rock an’ Roll Religion / Mary Lou Rock

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R-103: The Reminicin’ Boogie / Oh, Babe Baby

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R-104: The “Crazy” Boogie / The Fender Bender Boogie

Here it is, R-104: The “Crazy” Boogie:

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String Poppers on Finland’s Goofin’ Records:


Goofy-541: Lil’ Pig Rock / The Reminicin’ Boogie

First CD on Goofin’ Records:

GRCD 6036: Rock-A-Billy Record Co. Sampler:

The Rockin’ Blues / Rock & Roll Religion / Oh, Baby Babe / The Crazy Boogie / The Workin’ Man’s Blues

2nd CD on Goofin’ Records:

GRCD 6064: Willie Lewis – The Complete Rock-A-Billy Sessions:

The Rockin’ Blues / Whatever Happened to That Rock’n’Roll? / Oh, Baby Baby / The Reminicin’ Boogie / The Crazy Boogie / Working Man’s Blues / Fast Moving Freight Train Blues (Willie & Eddie) / I’ll Still Love You / Ran Down Daddy

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String Poppers on Germany’s Bop-Land Records:


BL 702: Willie Lewis, The Early, Rare & Wild Side 12″ LP

I Need A Little Help / Bop Cat Willie / An Old Song / Mary Lou Rock / Hummingbird / Sunglasses After Dark / Honky Tonkin’ / I’m Going Home / Be My Baby / What Ever Happened to That Rock n’ Roll / It Hurts Me Too / I’ll Still Love You / Claudette / Got You On My Mind / Honky Tonkin’

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On Germany’s Waterhole Records:


W-101: I Need A Little Help To Go My Bond / Leave Me Alone With The Blues

Waterhole Rock-A-Billy CLLP 6430 compilation: with Willie & The String Poppers,
Carl Sonny Leyland and others

Willie & The String Poppers – Boppin With the Cats / Date On The Corner

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Some early 45 sleeves put together by Denver’s Wax Trax Records.


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The records are Mystery Train, Baby, Let’s Play House, Golden Teardrops and
Diggin’ My Potatoes.

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