Ronnie Self is one of those second tier rockabilly guys that's just beyond the Sun Records mob cognition sphere. You have to get past the more recognizable names and delve a little deeper. In other words, cheat and buy a few rockabilly compilations with a bunch of names you don't know, play them a few dozen times and then walk around like some big shot know-it-all. You ought to at least check the songs below. Holy shit, "Bop-A-Lena" is all-time. Wild, crazy and everything in between. Really, one of those songs that doesn't let up. No fade out, vocals end, a couple more bars, and done. Imagine that coming from a guy who, when playing live, didn't stop for chatter or introductions. Just bam, bam, bam, from one song to the next without stopping (according to his sister's account at the Rockabilly Hall of Fame). And then this, explaining the photo above (courtesy Deke Dickerson) "Ronnie Self was so wild, and moved around so much while singing, that producer Owen Bradley forced Self to stand inside a cardboard box while recording–the only way to keep him on-mic." What a nut!
Speaking of Deke Dickerson, as happens periodically when I come across his name, I was again sucked into his web. You could spend a good amount of time just at his official site. Don't miss the liner notes he's written for reissues (Gene Vincent! Davie Allan! More!), or his blog (dormant, but still worth checking out if you haven't already). Now he's gone all modern with a Tumblr page. In addition, there's a bunch of well recorded live shows at the Internet Archive. Dude doesn't sit still.
If you've been poking around here for a while, you know that I've posted Ronnie Self's stuff before, as well as Dickerson's. As a consolation, there's a few other cuts down there of other rockabilly singers with the surname Self, including Ronnie Self's son Roman who gets it down particularly well for a modern era rockabilly singer.
~ NOTE: ALL MEDIA IS HOSTED BY THE BLOGS & SITES NAMED BELOW ~Listen:
Ronnie Self - Bop-A-Lena mp3 at Rocky-52.net
Ronnie Self - You're So Right For Me mp3 at Rocky-52.net
Ronnie Self - Ain't I'm A Dog mp3 at Rocky-52.net
Mack Self - I Vibrate mp3 at Mp3 Rockabilly
Alvie Self - Let's Go Wild mp3 at Mp3 Rockabilly
Roman Self - Big Fool mp3 at Mp3 Rockabilly
G.Self - Roll On, Big Mama (streaming) at YouTube