Lulu Belle and Scotty Wiseman

Image courtesy of Vic Lukas.

Sights & Sounds

Types of Artistry

Historic Artist

Lulu Belle and Scotty Wiseman

Country musicians

Avery and Watauga Counties, NC

Husband-and-wife country stars Lulu Belle and Scotty Wiseman had prominent music careers that included years of performing, recording, and even appearances in movies. They became known as the Hayloft Sweethearts, and Lulu Belle was voted the most popular female on the radio in 1936. They were stars of the WLS National Barn Dance in Chicago for 20 years.

Lulu Belle was born Myrtle Eleanor Cooper in Boone, and she moved to Evanston, Illinois, when she was a teenager. Scotty was born in Avery County to a musical family. He learned to play banjo and guitar before he was a teenager, and started working on radio stations in Virginia in the late 1920s. By the early 1930s, both Scotty and Lulu Belle had successfully auditioned for the WLS National Barn Dance program. The couple was initially teamed up as musical partners, and they soon formed a romantic relationship. They were married in 1934.

The Wisemans' career flourished, with performances all across the Midwest and on radio, and several commercial recordings. Between 1938 and 1945, the two also appeared in seven motion pictures.

In 1958, Lulu Belle and Scotty essentially retired from their musical careers and returned to Western North Carolina, settling in Spruce Pine. Scotty taught school and farmed, while Lulu Belle served two terms in the North Carolina legislature, becoming the first Democrat and woman to fill the position in her district.

The Wisemans made a few recordings and concert appearances in the 1960s and early 1970s. They were both inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame, and Scotty is featured in the Nashville Songwriters Association's Hall of Fame. His song, "Have I Told You Lately That I Love You?" has become a country and pop standard.

 

Note: "Historic Artist" designates one who is deceased but whose legacy continues to influence and inspire new generations.