Posts made in March, 2014

Legendary Label Dot Records Bought By Pop Country Label

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Folks it was announced this past week that legendary Country Music
label Dot Records was purchased by current label Big Machine Records.
Actually it’s the name they bought and are resurrecting and reviving.
It’s not been yet announced if Big Machine will be reissuing all of the
old classic country music that was released on the Dot label in the 1970’s.
Because 1979 Dot (or ABC) was sold to MCA Records.

Universal Music Group currently owns the Dot records catalog
which consists of SO MANY Country Legends and hits I couldn’t name
them all for you but I’ll tell you throughout the 1970’s Dot
Records released recordings from Roy Clark from 1969-1973
including “My Everlov’n Soul” and “Yesterday When I Was Young”.
And more of Roy’s biggest hits were released on Dot and produced
by Joe Allison.

More classic country music came from Dot including The Kendalls,
Gunilla Hutton, Tommy Jackson, and Freddy Fender.
Most of Donna Fargo’s famous recording were all on Dot including
“Funny Face’ and “Happiest Girl In The Whole USA” and “Daddy Dumplin”
all produced by Stan Silver.

MORE CLASSIC COUNTRY..Barbara Mandrell recorded 4 albums with Dot
from 1976-1977. Both “Married..But Not To Each Other” and “Midnight Angel”
were two hits of hers on Dot label.
Leroy Van Dyke, Joe Stampley and Tommy Overstreet also released albums.

However two of Dot’s biggest powerhouses in it’s history were
Don Williams and Hank Thompson.
Don recorded 6 albums with Dot and some of his biggest hits including
‘Tulsa Time” “Say It Again” and “Till The Rivers All Run Dry”.
Most was produced by Garth Fundis.

Hank Thompson recorded for Dot from 1968-1977 and released some
of his lesser known hits including “Smokey The Bar”.
He released 14 albums with Dot Records.

Randy Wood originally founded Dot Records, which was active between
1950 and 1977.
The main headquarters is located in Gallatin Tennessee and many of the
hits were recorded during the night because the radio station was
a daily broadcast. In 1956 the company moved to Hollywood California.

The original headquarters of Dot Records were in Gallatin, Tennessee,
in fact many of the earliest recordings for the label were recorded
right in the on-air production studios of radio station WHIN, which
Wood owned at the time. Since WHIN was a daytime only radio station,
recording sessions were held at night when the station was off the air.
In 1956, the company moved to Hollywood, California.

In its early years, the label specialized in artists from around
Tennessee. It soon branched out to include musicians and singers
from across the United States. It recorded a variety of different
genres of music. After the move to Hollywood, Dot Records bought
up many recordings by small local independent labels and issued
them nationally.

In 1957, Wood sold ownership of the label to Paramount Pictures, but
he remained the president of the company for another decade.
And in 1967 Dot Records was managed by the legendary Tommy Overstreet
who left the management seat in 1970 to pursue a solo act and
recorded 12 albums with Dot until 1978.
Dot Records began to release soundtrack albums and other ventures.

At Dot a subsidiary label entitled Hamilton Records was founded in 1958,
for rockabilly and rhythm and blues distributed Jeff Barry’s Steed
Records along with the only two records from the Herb Alpert and
Jerry Moss-owned Carnival Records. Dot Records created two other
subsidiary labels: Crystalette Records and Acta Records according
to my research of the rare labels.

Now in 1968 is when the classic country music started on the Dot label.
Under the umbrella of the Famous Music Group which was bought by ABC in
in 1974 or 75.
Then in 1979 it was sold to MCA Records and Dot name was dropped.

However just last week it was announced Pop Country label Big
Machine Records has bought the label and will release albums
under the Dot name and redone the logo as placed above.

Big Machine was a joint venture with Toby Keith who backed out
to open his own label.
They are responsible for a lot of falsely marketed “country music”
the likes of Taylor Swift and Rascall Flatts.

Honestly the only really good albums they ever released
was “Heartbreakers Hall Of Fame” by Sunny Sweeney which was
pretty much tossed under the rug by the label because
they were ashamed to have REAL country on their label.
And ‘In Time” by The Mavericks wasn’t bad.

Will this be another Gaylord purchasing the Opry fiasco?
I’m thinking YES..but we shall see..

This label was launched in 2005 so that should tell you
a red flag.

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Last Honky Tonk Music Series National Launch

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Last weekend I experienced country music history in Wilder Kentucky.
I LOVE the Cincinnati area and I didn’t realize the roots music
movement was so large scale up there until last Saturday night.
I rolled into town about 5 and got to meet C.J. Cumberland host of
crescent Hill Radio a local radio station and Mr.C.J was also the emcee
for the evening. So I was chatting with Cley Reynolds and also got
to meet Jo El and LeAnn Ulmer who are called “2 Country 4 Nashville”.
But more on them later..LOTS more on them ALL later!

Standing in front of Bobby Mackey’s Haunted Honky Tonk was a pinnacle
in my over thirty years of collecting and studying the history and origin
of country music. See at one time Nashville was marketing the ‘Nashville Sound”
and grooming their view of what “stars” should be like.
And much like Buck Owens and Mickey Gilley, Bobby had a style and look
all his own and didn’t “fit in” with what was his peers.
So in the 1970’s he opened his own empire and created a staple place
to showcase Honky Tonk Country Music. Much like Buck Owens and Mickey did.
I will be honest..getting to tell him he had a large part of my youth
was something I will always remember.
I will tell anybody that I AM the man I am today because of country music
and because of it’s impact on my morals and my rehabilitation.
Country Music may be largely associated with booze and fornication,
and I don’t get religious on here hard core but to say I didn’t love
Roy Acuff because he did all things in God’s glory would be a lie.

Inside I spent the first hour looking at the walls and listening
to what they had to say. How much history was on those walls?
Decades. Literally hundreds of 45’s and pictures from as far back
as the 50’s shortly after the death of our first superstar it ever
knew, Hank Williams.
I slowly scoured every inch of artwork and absorbed the dates and
places and people. I have said this many times..EVERY Honky Tonk
is a museum. EVERY stage is a canvas for these people.
It may not be as precious as the hallowed circle of wood on the Opry
but it holds relevance within Country Music.
It’s not just a place to get drunk.

The music series itself is a songwriter-artist series that is
nationwide and going on in every state at selected venues that
represent each state.
I have articles on 13 of the states so far, and I plan to continue
the series. And how they worked the first set was a set of three
roots music artists Chris “Moondog” Hall, Joshua Morningstar
and Daryl Wayne Dasher.

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Chris “Moondog” Hall is half of Goode Dawg with John Goode.
I first heard of them in Altamont and got more familiar with
them at the Wayne Mills benefit however their set was cut short.
Chris did a wonderful job and started out the series with the
OFFICIAL song of the series “Land of Make Believe”.
He also played “Better than That” and “what Happened To The Songs”.
I really liked What Happened..I had to listen a few more times
to that song, and it is really well written.
Later that night on the bus he told us all a story about his
tattoos on his chest and their meaning and it was so special
I couldn’t do it justice to TRY to retell it.
I owe him a bunch of gratitude for sharing it with us.

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Josh Morningstar I CANNOT say enough good about. I LOVE the man,
and his wife Tess is one of the most beautiful people you’ll EVER
meet. He’s been through hell like me and we BOTH beat the devil.
He WILL NOT have us..I got to witness Country Legend Billy Don Burns
sing “Dark Side Of The Spoon” to us together.
His album with his band the .30’s is really good and for the series
he played “Sellout Celebrity” “Williams, Whitley and Whiskey” and he
played “As long as you ain’t Coming Back” which is so cleverly
written it’s one of my favorite songs.
I owe him thanks for including me in one of his songs..and just for
being such a great brother.

Daryl Wayne Dasher I knew very little about until now.
He had an album on vinyl..I did not get to pick one up
YET. His album Great Big Sky looked to be promising.
He played ‘Yesterdays’ and another good one called
“Mountains of Montana”.

Now MIND YOU everybody..I was taking notes because of
the fact the WI FI was not working correctly because of
some technicalities so WHILE VISITING and taking pictures
I’m trying to take all this music in AT THE SAME TIME!
THIS is NOT easy and making sure I didn’t mess up song titles
was HARD.

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C.J. then came back and continued his spectacular job of
emceeing the event.
They brought out one of Country Music’s overlooked legends
Billie Gant. Billie has been head of the Vigilantes for longer
than I have been alive. He resonates history in his songs, and
he started out with “Rueben Dixon” which is one of my favorites.
He played one I have never heard before “The Sadder The Song
The Better I Feel” and I REALLY enjoyed that one.
“No God In Juarez” and he warned the radio people about his
closing song “Stop F’n Up Country Music”.

Legend after Legend at this place on this night.
And these Legends are GROSSLY overlooked and not appreciated
by today’s “normal” society. SHAME ON THEM!
You have my guarantee no other website can even tell you
who Billie Gant or Tom Ghent are..and that pisses me off!
These people MADE country music.
I have a theory and can back it up with FACT:
Country Music has THREE fundamental building blocks..pillars
if you will.
The producers, the songwriter and the steel guitar. You have
ALL THREE you have a classic album, in which you take people
like Vince Gill or Andy Gibson and you HAVE THAT!

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One of the highlights of the whole night! Billy Don Burns.
The man has done so much for country music. He wrote he
has produced and he has weathered more miles of road
than anyone I know. He will tell you ‘I buried so many
of my heros”. He opened with ‘Talk About Crazy” which is also
a new documentary in production.
He played “Haggard And Hank”, “Wanted Dead Or alive” which
he wrote at Billy The Kid’s grave.
“Outlaws At The Cross” and Brigitte London came up and sang
“When Waylon Came To Nashville’ with him.
He played “Desperate Men” which was his most successful song
recorded by the late Hank Cochran.
He played “hank Williams Lonesome And Keith Whitley Blue”
and per my request and Joshua Morningstar he played what I
consider the crown jewel of Country Music, a dark tale
of drug addicition and an anthem for survivors “Dark Side
of The Spoon”.

By this time I’ll be honest Iv’e had a few beers.
I stayed with friends and he said “Well get you home”.
So the green light was on..I don’t get much time to
enjoy myself. Health problems be damned the Coors Lights
went down as fast as the music soaked into my veins.

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The next set was Brigitte London with Cley Reynolds
and Jill Kinsey. Now I wasn’t familiar with Jill Kinsey’s
songs and I have not been able to contact her on Facebook
so I had to do a little research on her songs. She played
one called “I Love You You Won’t Know” and another about
Jessie Colter, who is widow of Waylon Jennings and mother
of Shooter, Terry, Deanna, Julie Rae, and Buddy Dean Jennings.

Brigitte London..where do I start? She’s got a voice of an angel
and a heart of gold. She works harder than just about ANYONE I KNOW
in the music business. PERIOD!
She does more for roots music and songwriters than ANYONE too.
“Hard Woman” was one of her songs and It’s off her album Thunder.
I have to buy a few more of her albums to fully get the impact of her
long musical career. She also sang part of “Last Honky Tonk” by Wayne Mills
who inspired this series. And it’s named after him.
She also did a new song called “Different You”.
She has a song on her new album Heart Of Highwaywoman that is called
“I Survived” and she said it was written by Roger Alan Wade.
I was listening to her album on I-65 and had to pull over and cry..the song
had that deep of an impact upon my old soul. Only two songs have EVER
affected me that deeply, “Dark Side Of The Spoon” Billy Don Burns
and “Choices” by Billy Yates.
I would do anything for her on a personal level, and she deserves a lot of
love for what she does.

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Cley Reynolds is the son of Country Legend Billy Ray Reynolds and he is
a BEAST on stage.
I owe him a debt of thanks for using my picture of him on his album back cover.
He played three songs off his album Live At The Silver Maple”
They were “Hurricane” “Ballad Of A Bad Man” and “Cool Water”.
He and I got to have some pretty cool conversation later on in the night
at the bar. I really enjoyed my time with him on a personal level, he is
really down to Earth and needs to be appreciated for his talent more than he is.
I think the world of these performers and what they are doing NATIONWIDE..
Hell now it’s WORLDWIDE!

Jo-el and LeAnn Ulmer make up the duo 2 Country 4 Nashville and I really enjoyed
their feature too. They played “Only Daddy That’ll Walk The Line” written by Jim Alley
in 1968 and they played “Who’s Gonna Fill Their Shoes” which was George Jones 45th album!
Honestly one of my favorite songs was “Call The Wrecker For My Heart” off that album.
This duo REALLY put alot of energy into their set and they frequently play the Nashville
Palace. I FULLY PLAN to come down and do a bigger write up on their show. I PROMISE!
NICE folks and I enjoyed their stage attire!

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They brought up Country Legend Tom Ghent to sing “Easy As Dreamin” which was recorded
by Bobby Bare in 1983 off the album Drinking From The Bottle..Singin From The Heart.
And I also got to have a wonderful conversation with Mr. Tom about his ethnic
background and it is really funny. You just gotta ask him sometime!

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The WHOLE CAST went up to sing “Good Hearted Woman” . In 1969, Jennings and Nelson were staying
in a motel in Fort Worth, Texas. Jennings was inspired to write the song after reading an
advertisement that promoted Ike and Tina Turner. Jennings joined Nelson during a poker game
and told him about the idea. The singers completed the song while Nelson’s wife, Connie Koepke,
wrote it down according to Shooter who told me that.

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The BIG finale! The top of the evening was (and always is there) The man himself..
Country Legend Bobby Mackey. He and his band plays covers and originals..on thing is
for SURE they dont play ANY pop country.
Like the radio plays “What They Call Country”…GOOD original song you MUST look it up!
They started out with “Working Man’s Blues” written by Merle Haggard. And in fact later
that evening he told a REALLY COOL (literally cold) story about how Merle performed there
in his overcoat..he then played “Song About Haggard”.

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Another GREAT original song was “That Jones Boy Is Gone” and “How The Story Ends”
and “Poor Pearl” which is written about one of the ghosts that reside in the lower
portion of the Honky Tonk. There are tours of it and we indeed went down there
and got to see some of the violent history of the building.

It was Bobby’s birthday that following Tuesday and some fans came up
and gave him a cake. And THEN was a BIG announcement and presentation
as they presented Bobby with the OFFICIAL LAST HONKY TONK MUSIC SERIES
plaque that was designed by my good friend Kenneth Marr.
It was burned into a wood barstool by the musicians.

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He played two more Haggard songs I remembered “Ramblin Fever” and “From Now On
All My Freinds Are Gonna Be Strangers”.
And honestly I was on the ghost tour and visiting with SO MANY friends
and watching people like Eric French ride the electric bull!
I NEVER SAW ONE in person! It really was an exciting time and WELL WORTH
a four hour drive to Cincinnati.

And I’ll be back! And I’ll be reporting MORE for the Last Honky Tonk
Music Series and MORE on these artists and venues involved!

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First Annual Spring Music festival: West Virginia

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I got a call from my buddy in West Virginia Noah Bowles last Friday
to help him cover this event for his band The Backwoods Butchers.
Mr. Noah is a GREAT supporter of Garyhayescountry.com and is always
willing to put a word out for me because I’m always willing to help
the bands and venues. It’s what I do!

Next Saturday March 29th in Summers County Memorial Building
in Hinton West Virginia the Backwoods Butchers will be involved
in their community for the Hinton Hope Foundation which is
an organization that is doing great things for the people and THAT
is what music and the music scene SHOULD BE all about..US!
When I found out they help narcotics anonymous I REALLY WANTED to
contribute.

I will share with you some pieces from Facebook first:
–Teamwork: We’ve teamed up with a local organization called
ETHNÊ HOUSE, which also has similar goals and who has organized
a Nutrition 101 course and a Narcotics Anonymous. We hope to
work in tandem to expand some of their programs for the county.
We’ve also become the local Blueprint Community Team for the town.
Being a Blueprint Community team gives Hinton the advantage of grant opportunities and numerous amounts of development and support
organizations at our disposal. I.E. The West Virginia USDA Rural Development,
West Virginia Office of Healthy Lifestyles, WV Department of Environmental Protection & WVU Extension Service.

The Hinton Hope Foundation is actively fundraising to upgrade the Summers County Memorial Building Auditorium to better function as an Arts and Entertainment Venue. These upgrades will help us to expand our abilities to provide Music and Performing Arts Programs in Summers County. The Hinton Hope Foundation in conjunction with the Summers County Commission and others are working together to secure grants and funding matches to achieve these goals for the citizens and especially the youth of Summers County.

Folks I think We ALL should actively support the bands involved!
They will be:

Jacob Woodrum Band,
Nick Bennett & Taran McKinney (Other Brothers),
Chosen Generation Bluegrass
New Horizon Bluegrass for the Soul
Abigail Belcher
Valley Bluegrass
Alix Crawford
The Backwoods Butchers.

Donation admission price of $6. $1 off the price if you come dressed in “country attire” (cowboy boots, cowboy hat, etc.) Or bring your own folding camp chair. Kids 5 and under are free.

Prizes awarded for best dressed in each age group
(5-10) (11-16) (17-25) (26-40) (41+)

YOU can donate or purchase tickets HERE.
Folks PLEASE send a few dollars their way and every little bit helps.
This all goes to a wonderful event supporting people who need
rehabilitation and HOPE!
Let’s help them.

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Urban Pioneers At Dublin’s In Bowling Green

Folks I’m tired as all getout and road weary and
I wouldn’t trade ONE DAMN MINUTE of it.
I’m at Dublin’s Irish Pub for the Urban Pioneers.
I was REALLY GLAD to have Mr. Jared tell me they are already
sold out of XL T shirts! KEEP BUYING MERCHANDISE GUYS!
VINTAGEQUEEN54 is here filming this event go check her
out on youtube.
They just finished up a two week tour after tonight in support of their
first self recorded album with cover art done by one man band Lou Shields.
And YES IT IS available on vinyl SOON!

Dublin’s is a smaller place but the stage was really nice and
the atmosphere was unique.
It’s off state street in the college district of Bowling Green’s
Western Kentucky University.
I did not look or inquire about food options.

First up right now is one member of the Dead Broke Barrons.
Which consists of Seth Sederpedigo, Hunter Colson and Shane Johnson.
I’ll feature them later on for themselves.
He opened his set with a song made more famous by the Carolina Chocolate Drops
called White House blues, which was a banjo song of old that dates
back to civil war era Kentucky.

He played one called ‘Hillbilly Heroin” and it was really
well written.
He played one called “Jolly Rancher” which had a short story
about prison life with it that involved shanks.
He slides really good barre chords and is a hell of a good
drummer.
There was a second performer and I did not catch his name
or any song titles accept “Crystal Got A Hold On Me” which was
actually VERY cleverly wrote.

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FINALLY the set I been REALLY wanting to see for MONTHS NOW!
The Urban Pioneers which consist of Liz Sloan on fiddle and
Jared McGovern on banjo. Also joining them was Keith Roberts
on Bass from the band Call Me Bronco.

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I’m fixin to be honest..I was in the men’s room for the first
song and I’m pretty sure the second song was called “Cindy”.
I’m not sure about the title and asked Miss Liz.
But I’ll tell you what..the WHOLE set was GREAT!

They played a song they made a video for “Apparition In The Fog”
And a song about A nutty aunt called “Izzy’s Song” followed by
“Please Give Me A Highway”. Other songs they played were
“My Hometown” and “Lost My Weed Waltz”.

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One of my favorite songs they play was “Liz’s Reel”
and “Autumn Time”. You really get to appreciate Liz Sloan’s
talent on those songs.
And honestly I have thought for a LONG time she’s one of most
talented performers Roots Music has!
She has a style you can hear and pick out..like you could
pick out country stars by their voices back in the day.

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Jared McGovern has a unique finger picking style on the banjo
that is similar to Phillip Steinmetz who is Grandpa Jones nephew.
I really enjoy his stage presence and together they make a damn fine
duo.
And when you add the bass to their music it’s beyond awesome.
When they play with Jayke Orvis I think their instruments will
start smouldering and catch fire!

They played a song about Muddy Roots which is an outdoor music
festival that features roots music twice a year in two states.
I report on both events and you can find out more SOON!
They also played a Wayne The Train Hancock cover “Hwy 54 Took My Girl”
Which is off his second album “Thats What Daddy Wants” produced by
Lloyd Maines.

They closed the show with “Breakin Down” and “Gotta Go”.

As a whole it was a really enjoyable evening with good people
and I had a really good time.
I’d go see them play ANYTIME and you should too.

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Steel Guitar Legend Bobbe Seymour Dies.

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I write this with absolute tears and a heartbroken soul tonight.
There are THREE integral pieces to Country Music, the producer
the songwriter and the steel guitarist.
People like Andy Gibson (steel guitarist for Hank 3) that are
ALL THREE OF THESE are especially integral to it.

Yesterday I learned of the passing of Bobbe Seymore.
Hell I doubt that many other websites even KNOW who he was.
And I intend to tell you who and what he’s done for country music.
More So, Bobbe was a teacher and influence to other pedal steel players.
He opened Steel Guitar Nashville in his later years and published many
books teaching young people the ART of steel guitar.
But he’s done MORE for country music than that!

He came to us from upstate New York from a very huge musical family
and his uncle was a traveling steel guitarist. He was fascinated by
those stories.

He joined the Air force and was stationed in Texas and when he was
off duty his steel guitar talents were boasted about and he played gigs
with local bands.
After his service he played with Johnny Lee Wills and Hank Thompson.

He moved to Nashville and after only two days here he began to play
with Ferlin Husky and Jean Shepard who at the time was under his parental
rights being a minor so she could tour.
He went on to work with Stonewall Jackson and Claude Gray and Billy Walker.

In the 1950’s after the death of Country Music’s first big superstar
Hank Williams his band the Drifting Cowboys were carried by Country Legend
Ray Price. And when they parted ways Ray began his own backup band
the Cherokee Cowboys of which Bobbe was an original part of.
This was during Ray’s most pivotal point in his career during the Honky Tonk Era.

He eventually gave up the road in favor of playing on hit records and
became one of Nashville most sought after session people.
Both for his skill AND his ethics and good business behavior..he was well
respected among his peers.

For many years he played many master sessions weekly and kept
a fast pace. He is known for producing and finding Trisha Yearwood
Steve Wariner and Tracey Lawrence.
He later on went back on the road and became a part of The Working Man’s Band
for Johnny Paycheck.

At the beginning of 2012 he developed Spinal Stenosis which took away
his ability to walk and play steel guitar.
But he still instructed people on how to play..he never lost his style.
He passed away Wednesday evening in his home in Tennessee.

Heaven’s gates have certainly opened up WIDE to accept him into
their midst..I loved you Bobbe and thank you for all your stories
at the store.

I have not heard of any services as of this time.

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