ARCHIVED ROOSTER REPORT: 10 September, 2017:

We’re excited to announce our first record. We had a lot of fun making it and we hope y’all enjoy it.

Release date Is TODAY!!

You can order it through CD Baby:

Here’s the cover:


ROOSTER REPORT-Updated 28 January, 2019: Oh, my mercy!—Nancy and I are still happily playing music down here in The Athens of Georgia. Give a shout if you’d like a live acoustic duo to play, sing, and get your gathering tapping their toes and swaying as they waltz, sing, hum or lip synch along at your reception, anniversary, book signing, symposium, Chautauqua, or party. Please write to us at

On Christmas Eve, 2009, I wrote this song at Lake Hartwell, Georgia, for my family. I originally called it What Kinda Food Do A Reindeer Eat?, but now I prefer Long Way To Go Before Christmas Day. I hope you enjoy it, and remember, like my Baby Doll’s birthday, Christmas is always coming up.

Long Way To Go Before Christmas Day-by Charlie Hartness: Charlie Hartness uke & vocals, Nancy Hartness guitar & vocals.


Find a quiet place each day.

Here are some festivals we are looking forward to in the coming months:

  • From Scratch Weekend-Alabama Folk School At Camp McDowell Nancy and I will teach ukulele, from scratch. Yep, that means you show up with a ukulele and no musical experience, and you depart as a musician.
  • Breakin’ Up Winter-February 28-March 3, 2019-  We’ll be a BUW with our friends Art and Margo Rosenbaum and their son, film maker Neil Rosenbaum, Jim and Joyce Cauthen, Rachel Eddy, and Martin Fisher, the Wax-Cylinder Wizard.
  • Blue Ridge Old-Time Music Week, June 9-15, 2019  Check out the 2019 line-up at Mars Hill University. These folks assemble an All-Star group of teachers, year after year. We are happy to know we will be there, teaching an afternoon Advancing Ukulele class.
  • FROM THE ROOSTER REPORT ARCHIVES-February 2, 2018 • Adam McKinney wrote a review that made us feel good.
    Oly Old Time Festival: Hawk Proof Rooster
    by Adam McKinney for OLY ARTS Old-time string music, with origins dating back to the late 19th century, never really went away. More accurately, it fell out of popular style, as most hit genres eventually do. Being a fundamentally American art form, though, it was always around, and it got a boost in national attention when the release of “O Brother, Where Art Thou?” reignited public interest in older types of music. Listening to string duo Hawk Proof Rooster, you can imagine their songs must have been accidentally left off that instantly iconic soundtrack.Even their name, Hawk Proof Rooster, stems from the sort of Southern-fried mysticism that would feel completely at home in the Coen Brothers’ vision of early 20th century Americana: one man’s chickens get picked off by hawks, one by one, until he sets off to find a rooster that could stand up to any old hawk. While this may sound like a tall tale that’s been passed down through the years, it is actually a story told by Charlie and Nancy Hartness, the married duo that make up Hawk Proof Rooster, about a neighbor of theirs in Athens, Georgia.Charlie and Nancy hailed from Portland, but found themselves living in Georgia. When they eventually released an album of their own – after time spent collaborating with groups like Spencer and Rains and the Sky Island Stringband – it was with the daunting 21-track “Got a Little Home.” Made up of a mixture of original songs and covers, the album runs the gamut of emotion, from carefree ditties (“Bill Sullivan’s Red Steer”) to mournful odes (“The Lynching”) to something in-between (“I Only Want a Buddy Not a Sweetheart”). At their most charming, in “Dear Beethoven,” they interpolate the fourth movement of Beethoven’s ninth symphony, and transcend the inherent pitfalls of such a cheeky trick.All along the way, Charlie and Nancy trade off instruments, incorporating guitar, ukulele, fiddle, banjo, and other hallmarks of old-time music. The harmony they’ve found in their relationship lays a smooth line to the harmony they make in music, creating an utterly warm experience.
  • Practice Time
  • Meanwhile, we are fortunate to have played with some stellar musicians on Recording Projects:
  • Spencer & Rains-The Old Texas Fiddle Vol II-Weird Tunes of Old Texas (we call it the red cd), Spencer & Rains “The Skeleton Keys”, a new recording and art book combination—available now and, coming your way in 2019, a new record by The Skeleton Keys. We had a great band reunion in Lawrence, Kansas last December, and were excited to work with Joe DeJarnette, affectionately known as joebass to many in the old-time community. Joe is our audio engineer, advisor, encourager, comforter and all-around splendid human being. We appreciate him.
  • Adventures in Old Cranberry by The Sky Island Stringband, with our friends and long time musical heroes Jimmy Triplett and Candy Goldman.
  • Hog-Eyed Man-Old World Music of the Southern Appalachians- Lucky us! We got invited along with Tom Baker and Art Rosenbaum to play a bit with our Hog-Eyed Men pals Jason Cade and Rob McMaken on this recording issued by our friend David Bragger at Tiki Parlour Recordings. Check it out:
  • Give a wave and say hey if you see us walking around Athens or any other town in this beautiful land.
  • July 12 is the birthday of George Washington Carver and Tom Collicott, two of our heroes.

Hello friends and thank you for visiting.

Teach a friend the ukulele today.


Baby Doll and her melodeon, reconditioned by Mister Theo Gibb!
  • Used to be on the radio: For years we enjoyed Robb Holmes’ live radio show It’s Friday at 3 p.m. Eastern time, Fridays, of course. Robb had a great run on WUGA radio, and we miss his voice and spirit coming to us over the air waves.



We had a great time playing and visiting with Robb Holmes on It’s Friday.

Mississippi You’re My Home-by Charlie Hartness. Nancy Hartness on guitar & vocals.

What We Gonna Do If We Find A Chicken?-by Charlie Hartness. Nancy Hartness on guitar & vocals.

I Want To Build An Aeroplane -by Charlie and Nancy Hartness- Nancy on guitar.

  • The Alabama Folk School    Check out their year-round class offerings in music, crafts and art.
  • One year we taught an Alabama Folk School uke class in the atrium of the chapel at Camp McDowell, a great spot for playing and singing. The class was taking a break after learning a two chord version of The Hokey Pokey. The door opened and the Harmony Singing teachers Ann Whitley and Kathy Hinkle came into our room. Stop, we said. You can only pass through this space if you will DO THE HOKEY POKEY while we play it. They did, and we did. (Joyce Cauthen played AND pokeyed).
  • Ann Whitley and friends do the Hokey Pokey on May Day at Jack and Jill, High Point, NC ca. 1954
    Ann Whitley and friends do the Hokey Pokey on May Day at Jack and Jill, High Point, NC ca. 1954. Ann is the first girl on the right.