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NEWSLETTER #144
Country, Bluegrass & Old Timey
Roy Acuff  -> Faron Young

 

   

NEW BOOKS

 
I WAS THERE WHEN IT HAPPENED My Life With Johnny Cash by Marshall Grant with Chris Zar ● BOOK $24.95
Hardbound, 367 pages, highly recommended
Counts as six CDs for shipping. Legendary country sideman steps into the spotlight to tell his story and what a story it is. Marshall Grant provided the pulse of some of the greatest of American music for close to 50 years and was definitely there when a lot of "it" happened. Whether being the rock solid Bass man and road manager for Johnny Cash & the Tennessee two (and Three) from year zero until 1980 or his later work managing the Statler Brothers, Marshal Grant has been witness to a lot of history, which he shares with great detail and flair in this superb book. Being a huge Country music and Cash fan I was thrilled when I heard about this and am now enthralled by the results. Also features a fantastic, thick picture section from Grant's own collection. This is simply a must for any Johnny Cash aficionado. (JM)

 

NEW DVDS

 
NOTE: Unless otherwise noted all DVDs offered are in NTSC format which means that they will not play on a European DVD players unless you have a multiple format player.
 
JOHNNY CASH Columbia 85662 Man In Black - Live In Denmark, 1972 ● DVD $14.98
19 tracks, 60 mins, essential
I really loved this DVD. I know there is a steady stream of Johnny Cash material coming out now and we will try and select only the best of it to provide to our loyal customers. Originally recorded for broadcast on Denmark television, this features the best known and loved line up of the full Johnny Cash review. Not only is The Mighty Carl Perkins (my hero!) playing lead guitar in Johnny's band, he also steps up to perform a couple of his classics for the audience. You also get fine performances from the Statler Brothers and the Carter Family of that time - Mother Maybelle, Helen, Anita, and sometimes June. Cash himself is right on the money with all of his work on this show. His rich, booming voice and endless charm are a delight as usual. His material tends to be playing to his audience, with a lot of his more family-friendly tunes, but it is interesting that he manages to do three Kris Kristofferson tunes without doing Sunday Morning Coming Down. Some of my favorite parts of this show are the two Carl Perkins numbers. Not only is Carl fabulous, but Johnny Cash goes over to the side of the audience while Carl is performing and plays some solid acoustic rhythm guitar. What class! The show ends with a barnstorming religious tune that Cash wrote that gets the whole cast singing along. Excellent stuff, truly one of the most essential Johnny Cash DVDs that I have ever seen (and I've seen a lot.) (JM)

 
VARIOUS ARTISTS New West 8025 Outlaw Country - Live From Austin, Texas ● DVD $17.98
14 tracks, 47 mins, highly recommended
Recorded live for Austin City Limits on September 22nd, 1996. The gang of outlaws rounded up for this session are: Willie Nelson, Waylon Jennings, Kris Kristofferson, Billy Joe Shaver and Kimmie Rhodes. It's not much of a surprise that with this line-up, it was a damn great show! This is a fantastic loose show full of great songs, storytelling and general screwing around. The set consists of each artist taking a lead on a song and some of the others joining in--or not--depending on the song and, seemingly, if anyone felt inclined. They take this idea around in a circle a few times and then all gang up for a rousing rendition of On The Road Again. Nicely, most of the set was filled out with lesser known songs, sung in the intimate style that Austin City Limits can bring out of an artist. I'm not as familiar with Kimmie Rhodes, she definitely held her own with this motley group of Country legends. All of the artists were in great voice and seemed to be having a great time, which was really nice to see. (JM)

 

NEW COMPACT DISCS

 
ROY ACUFF Music Mill 70041 Gospel Favorites ● CD $11.98
A collection of popular gospel songs sung by Acuff drawn from recordings made for his own Hickry label in the 60s and 70s. Includes I Saw The Light/ Just A Closer Walk With Me/ Dust On The Bible/ Turn Your Radio On/ The Family Who Prays (Shall Never Part)/ Hold To God's Unchnaging Hand/ Lord Build Me A Cabin Of Glory/ When I Lay My Burdens Down/ Little Moses/ Somebody Touched Me, etc.

 
DELIA BELL Wounded Bird 3838 Delia Bell ● CD $12.98
10 tracks 31 mins, recommended
Reissue of 1983 album by superb bluegrass/ country singer from Oklahoma produced by and featuring Emmylou Harris. A collection of country, bluegrass and old timey standards with an all-star group of musicians including Carl Jackson, Byron Berline, Emory Gordy, Steve Fishell and others. Fine performances of Coyote Song/ I Forgot More (Than You'll Ever Know About Him)/ Wildwood Flower/ Flame In My Heart/ Lone Pilgrim, etc. (FS)

 
JOHNNY BOND Bear Family BCD 16810 Gonna Shake This Shack Tonight - Put Me To Bed ● CD $21.98
30 of the more upbeat sides from this popular and prolific Western performer recorded for Columbia between 1941 and 1957 - four previously unissued. Includes The Little Rock Rock/ The Son Of Casey/ I'll Be Here (After You've Gone)/ Fast Women And Sloe Gin/ Keep You Cotton Pickin' Hands Off My Gal/ Somebody's Pushin'/ That's Just What I'll Do/ Don't Take It Away/ Broken Doll, etc. Johnny is accompanied by musicians like Dick Reinhardt, Jack Rivers, Joaquin Murphy, Jimmy Wyble, Speedy West, Jerry Adler, Jimmy Bryant, Tex Atchison, Fiddlin' Kate, Joe Maphis and others. 28 booklet has extensive notes, rare photos and fulldiscographical info.

 
HOYT "SLIM" BRYANT B.A.C.M. 178 And His Wildcats ● CD $14.98
31 tracks, 70 minutes, highly recommended
A cowboy-flavored ensemble that evolved from Clayton McMichen's Louisville-based Georgia Wildcats, Slim Bryant and His Wildcats were staples on Pittsburgh radio and television during the '40s and early '50s. Taking its vocal cues from California's close-harmony Western trios, the Wildcats were particularly notable for their hot take-off guitar, fiddle and accordion solos. The group made precious few recordings, but a healthy sampling of its music survived via 16" NBC Radio Thesaurus transcriptions cut around 1946-47. Slim Bryant was - and at age 98, still is - one of the country and jazz guitar's unsung heroes. His leads are smart and dazzling; his fills are a primer in how to accompany a vocalist. Sharp-eared listeners will recognize some familiar licks; Les Paul was a Bryant fan. Of the two instrumentals on this disc, Walking the Pup best showcases Bryant's skill. Fiddler Ken Newton, accordionist Al Azzaro and bassist Loppy Bryant all could swing, as does an unidentified rhythm guitarist. The trio harmonies compare to early Sons of the Pioneers; Newton and Bryant's brother Loppy share vocal leads. Though recommended listening to anyone who appreciates Pee Wee King/ Whippoorwills-styled music, this disc is a must for serious country guitar aficionados. Sound is better than usual for B.A.C.M.; Bryan Chalker penned a brief appreciation. (DS)
HOYT "SLIM" BRYANT & HIS WILDCATS: Answer To Rainbow At Midnight/ Back To Old Smokey Mountain/ Barnyard Band/ Deep Water/ First Rose/ Got A Gal In A Town Way Out West/ He Holds The Lantern/ I Ain't Gonna Worry No More/ I Hate To See You Go/ I'll Never Make The Same Mistake Again/ I'm A Lonely Little Petunia In An Onion Patch/ Lone Star Moon/ My Little Texas Gal/ My Saddle My Bronco And You/ Nag Oh Nag Oh Nag/ New San Antonio Rose/ Oklahoma City/ Penny Ante Polka (instr.)/ Sioux City Sue/ Slow Train Through Arkansas/ Someday You'll Want Me To Want You/ Ten To One/ That's How Much I Love You/ The Letter I Forgot To Mail/ Thunder Storm/ Train Whistle Boogie/ Tweedle O Twill/ Walking The Pup (Instr.)/ Where The Mountains Meet The Sky/ Whistle/ Winter Fell On The Range

 
CLIFF CARLISLE JSP JSPCD 7768 Volume 2: When I Feel Froggie I'm Gonna Hop ● CD $28.98
Second collection of sides by this superb early singer and slide guitarist features 97 tracks recorded between 1930 and 1941 drawn from 78s in the collection of Joe Bussard. Includes many tracks making their first appearance on CD.
CLIFF CARLISLE: A Little Bit Of Loviní From You/ A Little White Rose/ Alone And Lonesome/ Alone And Lonesome/ Birmingham Jail/ Birmingham Jail No. 2/ Blue Dreams/ Blue Eyes/ Blue Yodel No. 6/ Box Car Yodel/ Casey County Jail/ Childhood Dreams/ Childhood Dreams/ Crazy Blues/ Deep Sea Blues/ Desert Blues/ Dollarís All I Crave/ Donít Marry The Wrong Woman/ Down In The Jailhouse On My Knees/ Dream A Little Dream Of Me/ End Of Memory Lane/ Flag That Train/ Fussiní Mama/ Georgia Moon/ Go And Leave Me If You Wish To/ Going Back To Alabama/ Hen Pecked Man/ Hobo Jackís Last Ride/ Hobo Jackís Last Ride/ I Believe Iím Entitled To You/ In A Box Car Around The World/ Iím Glad Iím A Hobo/ Iím Lonely And Blue/ Jesus My All/ Just A Lonely Hobo/ Just A Lonely Hobo/ Just A Wayward Boy/ Just A song At Childhood/ Lonely/ Longing For You/ Look Out Iím Shifting Gears/ Looking For Tomorrow/ Louisiana Blues/ Memories That Make Me Cry/ My Little Sadie/ My Lonely Boyhood Days/ My Old Saddle Horse Is Missing/ My Two Time Mama/ Never No Moí Blues/ No Wedding Bells/ Nobody Wants Me/ On My Way To Lonesome Valley/ On The Lone Prairie/ Rambliní Jack/ Ramshackled Shack On The Hill/ Ridiní That lonesome Train/ Ridiní The Blinds To The Call Of The Pines/ Rocky Road/ Roll On Blue Moon/ She Waits For Me There/ Sheís Waiting For Me/ Shine On Harvest Moon/ Shuffliní Gal/ So Blue/ Sunshine And Daisies/ Sweet As The Roses Of Spring/ Sweet Nannie Lisle/ T For Texas/ That Good Old Utah Trail/ The Bunch Of Cactus On The Wall/ The Cowboy Song/ The Fatal Run/ The Flower Of The Valley/ The Gal I Left Behind/ The Little Dobie Shack/ The Plea Of A Mother/ The Poor Widow/ The Rustlerís Fate/ The Vacant Cabin Door/ The Written Letter/ Thereís A Lamp In The Window Tonight/ They Say It Is The End Of The Trail Old Paint/ Traveling Life Alone/ Two Little Sweethearts/ Valley Of Peace/ Virginia Blues/ When I Feel Froggie Iím Gonna Hop/ When Iím Dead And Gone/ When The Cactus Is In Bloom/ When The Old Cow Went Dry/ When You Wore A Tulip/ Where Southern Roses Climb/ Will You Meet Me Just Inside/ Wonít Somebody Pal With Me/ Wreck Of No. 52/ Your Saddle Is Empty Tonight/ Youíll Never Know

 
THE CARTER SISTERS & MOTHER MAYBELLE B.A.C.M. 176 Complete Original Recordings, 1949-1952 ● CD $14.98
27 tracks, 74 mins, highly recommended
Country Routes have reissued three CDs of radio transcriptions by this fine group but this is the first of two CDs to feature all their commercial recordings featuring 27 tracks recorded between February 1949 and November 1952. The earlier sides feature the distinctive guitar work of Chet Atkins. The last seven tracks recorded in 1952 features the group performing fine versions of songs from the Carter Family repertoire with Mother Maybelle on autoharp and also providing some of her distinctive and highly influential guitar playing. Their renditions of He's Solid Gone and You Are My Flower are highlights here. (FS)
THE CARTER SISTERS & MOTHER MAYBELLE: (This Is) Someone's Last Day/ A Picture A Ring And A Curl/ A Trinket Of Shiny Gold/ Blue Skies And Sunshine/ Columbus, GA/ Don't Wait/ Down On My Knees/ Fair And Tender Ladies/ Foggy Mountain Top/ God Sent My Little Girl/ Gotta Find Me Somebody To Love/ He's Solid Gone/ I Ain't Gonna Work Tomorrow/ I Never Will Marry/ I've Got A Home Up In Glory/ I've Got My Share Of Trouble/ Little Orphan Girl/ Sun's Gonna Shine In My Back Door/ The Day Of Wrath/ The Day They Laid Mary Away/ Walk A Little Closer/ Weep, Dear Willow?/ Wildwood Flower/ Willow, Will You Weep For Me/ You Are My Flower

 
JOHNNY CASH Columbia-Legacy 75914 Johnny Cash At San Quentin (Legacy Edition) ● CD $39.98
31 tracks, 100 mins on two CDs, 52 mins on DVD, essential
This collection is just about perfect. You get two CDs full of music and 1 DVD documentary taken from probably the most famous single show in Country music history, handsomely packaged with extensive booklet with lots of pictures and interview goodies. The CDs feature all original tracks from the classic LP issue from 1969, now fully expanded over 2 discs, adding some 13 previously unreleased tracks: 3 Carl Perkins tunes, 2 Statler Brothers tracks, 4 Carter Family tracks, and 4 tracks with Johnny Cash himself on lead, including a fantastic take on Jackson with June The Long Black Veil/ Give My Love To Rose, and Blistered. The DVD with this set is the U.K./ Grenada TV special filmed at the show, featuring great footage and interview material from Cash, members of the entourage and some intense interviews with some of the guards and prisoners. The Grenada documentary is notable/ notorious for two other items. 1. You get to see the performance that was used for the multi-million selling single of Boy Named Sue where Cash is sitting down doing the song, still reading it off of the paper on a stand in front of him. 2. One of the most famous pictures of Johnny Cash, the immortal "Johnny giving the bird!" shot happened here and was inspired by the Grenada film crew. Outstanding! Johnny Cash fans, it's Christmas again! Don't hesitate to pick this up, you will not be disappointed. (JM)

 
WILMA LEE & STONEY COOPER TeeVee 752 24 Greatest All-Time Hits ● CD $11.98
24 tracks, 71 mins, highly recommended
Wilma Lee & Stoney Cooper were one of the greatest traditional country duos with Wilma Lee's spine chilling, powerful and soulful lead vocals with husband Stoney's accompaniment on fiddle and harmony vocals. These recordings from the late 60s and early 70s are some of their last and although a little of the fire had gone out of the vocals and the accompaniments were unexceptional with a metronomic bass and drums on most tracks it is still a superb collection of old time country gospel along with a number of secular songs from the repertoire of The Carter Family. It includes new recordings of some of their most famous songs from the 40s and early 50s like Walking My Lord Up Calvary Hill/ The Legend and the chilling Thirty Pieces Of Silver as well as other fine songs like great Speckled Bird/ Tramp On The Street/ God Gave Noah The Rainbow Sign/ Keep On The Firing Line/ I Dreamed About Mama Last Night/ This Old House/ Worried Man Blues/ Wreck On the Highway and others. (FS)

 
THE CROWE BROTHERS King 0517-2 Jesus Is Coming - Bluegrass Gospel ● CD $8.98
10 tracks, 28 mins, recommended
Fine collection of bluegrass gospel featuring the excellent harmonies of Josh and Wayne Crowe accompanied by a straight ahead group including banjo, fiddle, mandolin, guitar and bass. No recording details are given but I would imagine these are from the 70s. Songs include Jesus Is Coming/ Canaan's Land (actually Where The Soul Of Man Never Dies)/ Oak Grove Church/ Blessed Jesus Hold My Hand/ He's Coming Back To Earth Again, etc. (FS)

 
JIMMIE DAVIS B.A.C.M. 180 Where The Old River Flows ● CD $14.98
24 tracks recorded between 1929 and 1945 by this popular country performer and two term governor of Louisiana. His earliest recordings were modeled after Jimmie Rodgers with one or two guitar accompaniments with later recordings featuring him with various groups including Charles Mitchell's Texans, Milton Brown's Musical Brownies, Lani McIntyre's Hawaiians, Lawrence Welk's Orchestra(!) and others. Mostly popular and sentimental songs with the occasional blues or gospel song. Includes Baby's Lullaby/ Where The Old Red River Flows/ Pal Of Long Ago/ In the West Where Life Is Free/ Meet Me Tonight In Dreamland/ Two More Years And I'll Be Free/ I'm the One/ Walking My Blues Away, etc.
JIMMIE DAVIS: Baby's Lullaby/ Honky Tonk Blues/ I Wonder Where You Are/ I'm The One/ If I Cry You'll Never Know/ In The West Where Life Is Free/ Meet Me Tonight In Dreamland/ My Louisiana Girl/ My Mother's Bible/ Never Break A Promise/ One Two Three Four/ Pal Of Long Ago/ Plant Some Flowers By My Grave/ She's A Hum Dum Dinger/ That's Why I'm Nobody's Darling/ The Love I Have For You/ Tired Of Crying Over You/ Two More Years And I'll Be Free/ Walking My Blues Away/ Wave To Me My Lady/ What's The Matter With You Darling/ When It's Round Up Time In Heaven/ Where The Old Red River Flows/ You Tell Me Your Dream And Tell You Mine

 
THE DELMORE BROTHERS JSP JSPCD 7765 Volume 2 - The Later Years, 1933-1952 ● CD $28.98
Four CD box set, 97 tracks, essential
Complementing JSP 7727 this is another fabulous collection of singing and musicianship from this fabulous duo from Alabama. The first two dics, like JSP 7727, features recordings made between 1933 and 1941 and between the two sets cover most of, if not all, their recordings from this period. Most of these are new to CD. The second two discs features 48 of their classic King recordings cut between 1943 and 1952 and though many of these have been reissued before, it's great to have them together here along with the earlier sides. Many of 78s used here are from the collection of Joe Bussard and sound quality is generally excellent with brief, but informative, notes by Pat harrison. (FS)
THE DELMORE BROTHERS: Ainít It Hard To Love/ Alcatraz Island Blues/ Baby Youíre Throwing Me Down/ Barnyard Boogie/ Be My Little Pet/ Blues Stay Away From Me/ Brother Take Warning/ Brownís Ferry Blues/ Brownís Ferry Blues No.3/ Bury Me Under The Weeping Willow/ By The Banks Of The Rio Grande/ Calling To That Other Shore/ Carry Me Back To Alabama/ Donít Forget Me/ Donít Forget Me Darling/ Donít Let Me Be In The Way/ Down Home Boogie/ Everybody Loves Her/ Fast Express/ Fifty Miles To Travel/ Freight Train Boogie/ Gamblerís Yodel/ Gathering Flowers From The Hillside/ Goiní Back To Georgia/ Goiní Back To The Blue Ridge Mountains/ Gonna Lay Down My Old Guitar No.2/ Good Time Saturday Night/ Harmonica Blues/ Heart Of Sorrow/ Hey, Hey Iím Memphis Bound/ Hillbilly Boogie/ Home On The River/ I Ainít Gonna Stay Here Long/ I Believe It For My Mother Told Me So/ I Donít Know Why I Love Her/ I Found An Angel/ I Guess Iíve Got To Be Going/ I Know Iíll Be Happy In Heaven/ I Let The Freight Train Carry Me On/ I Loved You Better Than You Know/ I Wonder Where My Darling Is Tonight/ Iíll Never Fall In Love Again/ Iím Alabama Bound/ Iím Going Back To Alabama/ Iím Leaviní You/ Iím Leaviní You/ Iím Lonesome Without You/ Iím Sorry I Caused You To Cry/ Just The Same Sweet Thing To Me/ Kentucky Mountain/ Last Night I Was Your Only Darling/ Leaviní On That Train/ Lonely Moon/ Lonesome Day/ Look Up, Look Down That Lonesome Road/ Memories Of My Carolina Girl/ Midnight Special/ Midnight Train/ Mississippi Shore/ Mobile Boogie/ My Homeís Across The Blue Ridge Mountains/ New False Hearted Girl/ Nothing But The Blues/ Now Iím Free/ Peach Tree Streeet Boogie/ Please Be My Sunshine/ Precious Jewel/ Prisonerís Farewell/ Quit Treatiní Me Mean/ Rambliní Minded Blues/ Remember I Feel Lonesome Too/ Rounderís Blues/ Shame On Me/ She Left Me Standing On The Mountain/ She Wonít Be My Little Darling/ Some Of These Days Youíre Gonna Be Sad/ Somebody Elseís Darling/ Stop That Boogie/ Sweet, Sweet Thing/ Tennessee Choo Choo/ Thatís How I Feel So Goodbye/ The Farmerís Girl/ The Fast Old Shovel/ The Girl By The River/ The Only Star/ The Storms Are On The Ocean/ The Trail Of Time/ The Wabash Cannonball Blues/ The Wrath Of God/ Thereís A Lonesome Road/ Thereís Sumpiní About Love/ Trouble Ainít Nothiní But The Blues/ Used Car Blues/ Waitiní For That Train/ Whoís Gonna Be Lonesome For Me/ Why Did You Leave Me Dear/ Wonderful There

 
FLATT & SCRUGGS Music MIll 71010 Father's Table Grace ● CD $9.98
10 tracks of classic bluegrass gospel drawn from Lester & Earl's Columbia recordings made between 1951 and 1966. Includes Brother, I'm Getting Ready To Go/ Take Me In The Lifeboat/ Father's table Grace/ Joy Bells/ Get On That Road To Glory, etc.

 
RED GARRETT Cattle 331 Red Garrett's Complete Hillbilly Collection, 1953-1956 ● CD $18.98
Obscure but fine honky tonk singer accompanied by musicians like Don Helms, Bud Isaacs, Chet Atkins, Tonny Jackson and others.
RED GARRETT: Blame It On The Moonlight/ Bull's Eye/ Clear Sailing/ Don't Be Ashamed Of Your Past/ Don't Believe A Thing I Say/ Long Gone/ May You Never Be Alone-A Bed Of Roses/ Moon Tan/ My Search On Earth Is O'er/ Papa Joe's Place/ Please/ Smoke Screen/ Standing At The End Of The World/ Tell Me Again/ That's Why I'm Happy/ They Got Me Singing That Way/ Too Late To Plow Now/ You Played To My Heart (On Your Trumpet Of Love)

 
JOE GOLDMARK Lo-Ball 9 Seducing The '60s ● CD $15.98
13 tracks, 41 min., recommended
Pedal steel wizard Joe Goldmark used to be a member of the almost-legendary Twangbangers (that included guitar hero Redd Volkaert) and since leaving that ensemble has released five albums of pedal steel goodness, including the amusingly titled "Strong Like A Bull...But Sensitive Like A Squirrel." This time he sets his time machine for the 1960s and countrifies some classics, including The Who's The Kids Are Alright, the Beach Boys' Darlin', The Beatles' I Feel Fine, and The Tremeloes' (by way of the artist formerly known as Cat Stevens) Here Comes My Baby. The Gram Parson's penned Hickory Wind (a hit for The Byrds) seems like a natural and is, but the real gem of the album is Neil Young's Helpless (featuring guest vocals by Brandi Shearer), which melts in your heart and not in your ears--or something like that. Shearer also does respectably well on the Brenda Holloway classic Every Little Bit Hurts. Other hired help includes guitarist John McFee (ex-Clover--the band that backed Elvis Costello on his first album!-- ex-Doobie Bros., ex-Southern Pacific), and, on backing vocals, the talented Dave Gleason, whose Midnight, California album is required listening for all country music fans. Gary Claxton and Bart Davenport also share vocal duties. (JC)

 
MERLE HAGGARD New West 6090 Live From Austin, Texas ● CD $16.98
15 tracks, Highly recommended
Recorded live in 1996 with Merle and his full regular band. This is the CD companion to the fantastic DVD with all of the same cuts. Merle is in superb voice and so many of his great songs are represented here.

 
R.D. HENDON Cattle 329 And His Western Jamboree Cowboys, 1951-1956 ● CD $18.98
31 tracks featuring various groups led by Texas bandleader R.D. Hendon featuring musicians and vocalists like Charlie Harris, Eddie Noack, Harold Sharp, Gig Sparks, Jack Rodgers and others.
R. D. HENDON & HIS WESTERN JAMBOREE COWBOYS: Blues Boogie (Inst.)/ Don't Push Me (Let Me Fall)/ Don't Say No/ For Now And Always/ Hit And Run Driver/ I Ain't Got A Lick Of Sense/ I Can't Run Away/ I'd Still Want You/ I'm Going To See My Baby/ Little White Cottage/ Lonely Nights/ Marking Time/ Music Making Mama From Memphis/ Nervous Breakdown (Inst.)/ No Shoes Boogie/ Oh Mr President/ Please Mr Postman/ Return My Broken Heart/ Spanish Fireball/ Step By Step/ Talking To Myself/ The Waltz Of Texas/ The Wandering Blues/ There's A Place In My Heart/ This Moon Won't Last Forever (# 1)/ This Moon Won't Last Forever (# 2)/ Those Tears In Your Eyes/ Trademark/ We Smiled/ You Crazy Mixed Up Kid/ You Traveled Too Far

 
JOHNNY HORTON & BILLY BARTON Stampede 5001 Country Treasure Series, Vol. 1 ● CD $19.98
Stampede is a new subsidiary of rock 'n' roll label Rockstar and is devoted to issuing early and rare country recordings - much of it drawn from a stash of acetates recorded for Sylvester Cross in the early 50s and most of them never issued before. This one is devoted to the well known Johnny Horton and the very fine and prolific but little known Billy Barton. This set features 14 solo sides each by Johnny and Billy, three duets, a solo by Billy's wife Wanda Wayne and two duets of Billy & Wanda. Since these were intended as demos the instrumental arrangements are fairly sparse - sometimes just a guitar but the performances are fine. Eight of the Horton tracks were on the Bear Family box "The Early Years" (BCD 16258 - $89.98) but all the other tracks here are unissued.

 
RAY WYLIE HUBBARD Sustain 020-02 Snake Farm ● CD $14.98
11 tracks, 43 min., very highly recommended
The latest album from the Texas song writing legend, whose career in country reaches to the 1970s, is also probably his finest effort. "Snake Farm" sounds like the aural equivalent of roadhouse whisky, with lyrics that never fail to surprise and amaze. Produced by Gurf Morlix (who has produced Lucinda Williams, among others), this album is stripped down and raw, owing more to the blues than country. Just about any couplet in any song begs to be quoted, as Hubbard sings of jesus, heartache, rock 'n' roll, mythology, and snake farm love.( Is it any wonder that he thanks underground author Charles Bowden on the booklet notes?) One song opens with, "Young pups they ask me what makes my kind/ Shameless women and pork rinds." Another with, "God smiles and light a cigarette/ Says there's some souls I ain't gonna get." An original. (JC)

 
ANN JONES Cattle 330 And Her Western Sweethearts, 1949-1954 ● CD $18.98
Possibly the first all female country group who joined on these sessions by musicians like Louis Innes, Speedy West, Billy Liebert, Smokey Rogers, Joe Maphis and others/
ANN JONES AND HER WESTERN SWEETHEARTS: A Big Fat Gal Like Me/ A Little Bit Of Nylon/ Baby Sitter's Blues/ Be Safe-Be Sure-Be Careful/ God Gave Me You/ Hi-Ballin' Daddy/ How Many Years/ I Carry Your Picture In My Heart/ I Love You More As Time Goes By/ I've Had It/ If I Could Buy You/ If I Was A Cat/ Knockin' Blues/ Let The Love Bug Bite/ Lonesome With You/ Love Bird/ Love Is A Losing Game/ Monkey Business/ Our Kind Of Love/ Out Of Sight, Out Of Mind/ Smart Aleck/ Steppin' Out With My Shadow/ This Secret Love/ Too Old To Cut The Mustard (& Pee Wee King's Golden West Cowboys)/ You Won't Find Me Singing The Blues For You/ You've Got The Right Of Way

 
GEORGE JONES Country Stars 55538 The Legend Begins ● CD $9.98
23 tracks, 57 mins, highly recommended
Gathers up tracks from the earliest part of George Jones' career. All these tracks were recorded for the Starday record label from 1954 - 1957, starting when George is fresh out of the marines and looking to make a name for himself. Jones is great on these tracks, even though on a great many of them he is clearly trying to find his identity by going through phases of development that tend to sound like a who's who of Grand Ole Opry legends. One thing that George Jones is doing, quite impressively for this stage of his career, is developing his songwriting. A staggering 20 of these 23 songs are written by Jones--mostly solo, but occasionally with help--with great success when it comes to early hits like Why Baby Why/ What Am I Worth, and Just One More, which all hit the Country music top ten. Like many an aspiring Country singer of the 1950's working their way to stardom, Jones took a foray into the popular Rockabilly sound recording under the name "Thumper Jones," among others. We get three of those wild & wooly tracks here. Rock It and How Come It are a blast although his take on Heartbreak Hotel leaves a bit to be desired. All in all a great collection that chronicles one of the greatest Country music singers of all time as he hones his craft and becomes the legend that he is today. (JM)

 
GEORGE JONES & MERLE HAGGARD Bandit 79816 Kickin' Out the Footlights Again ● CD $18.98
14 tracks, 45 mins, highly recommended
Two living legends and old friends get together for another (and last, according to the notes) session. Taking turns covering each other's hits, with duets on 4 numbers. For comparisons sake, I broke out my old vinyl copy of "A Taste Of Yesterdays wine," their last album together from 1982. This new one is every bit as good, if not better, than that outing from almost 25 years ago. That record was much more about newer music of the day, while this one leans much more towards nostalgia. Both men are in fine voice, with Merle sounding a bit better, but he is a few years younger. Again, I am thrilled about how much quality music both of these artists are still putting out. I know satellite radio is playing Sick, Sober and Sorry off of this, but it would love to hear mainstream Country radio pick this up. (JM)

 
FRED KIRBY B.A.C.M. 179 That Good Old Utah Trail ● CD $14.98
25 tracks, 72 minutes, excellent
Complementing Cattle's earlier Fred Kirby collection, this B.A.C.M anthology focuses on the North Carolina singer's earliest recordings. The six tracks from Kirby's first February 1936 session reveals a pleasant, if undistinguished Jimmie Rodgers clone. Four duets recorded with Bob Phillips the following day are more interesting; Roll On, Roll On could have inspired Woody Guthrie's enduring Columbia River song. A June 1936 yielded more Rodgersesque solos plus duets with Don White and Cliff Carlisle. Another session four months later shows that Kirby evolved into a pleasant, if undistinguished western crooner, backed by the requisite cowboy string band. The disc's most engaging interesting track is a 1937 duet with Cliff Carlisle, Cowboy's Dying Dream. By 1938 Kirby was recording hillbilly fare for Decca, which was pleasant, if . okay, you get the picture. The sound is generally good; Brian Chalker offers brief notes. (DS)
ALSO AVAILABLE: Cattle CCD 252 The Original 'Atomic Power' CD $18.98 The best all-around survey of Fred Kirby's records, mixing his better prewar sides with postwar ballads and country boogies. This 26-track set includes Kirby's beloved Cold War classics Atomic Power and When the Hell Bomb Falls. No duplication with the B.A.C.M. set above.
FRED KIRBY: Cathedral In The Pines/ Cottage By The Wayside/ Cowboy's Dying Dream/ Everyday Is Mother's Day To Me/ Find My Precious Home/ I Got A Red Hot Mama/ I'm A Gold Diggin' Papa/ I'm Lonesome Sad And Blue/ I'm The Roughest And Toughest/ In The Shade Of The Old Pine Tree/ Life's Railway To Heaven/ Lonesome Lullaby/ My Carolina Sweetheart/ My Darling Nell/ My Heavenly Sweetheart/ My Man/ My Old Fashioned Sweetheart/ My Old Saddle Horse Is Missing/ My Sweet Little Mother Of The Range/ Roll On, Roll On/ Round Up Time In Heaven/ Song Of The Golden West/ That Good Old Utah Trail/ Underneath The Texas Moonlight/ Wagon Train Keep Rolling Along

 
LAURIE LEWIS & THE RIGHT HANDSTHE Hightone 8194 The Golden West ● CD $17.98
13 tracks, 53 min., essential
Lewis and her four right hands (better than two left feet, no doubt) have recorded a gem of an album. Acoustic and old timey, "Golden West" includes covers from bluegrass pioneers (Bill Monroe, Jimmie Rodgers) and latter day wonders (Billy Joe Shaver, Jimmy Dale Gilmore) with equal aplomb. And the originals sit comfortably along side the covers, especially the Wendell Barry-Laurie Lewis charmer Burley Coulter's Song For Kate Helen Branch, which features guitarist Scott Huffman and his wonderfully world-weary voice. He also turns in tremendous performances on Life Forever and his own Hard Luck In Heaven. Two tracks (Rank Stranger, A Hand To Hold) sport harmony vocals from Linda Ronstadt, and as good as they sound, everything here is just as good. A real find. (JC)

 
THE MADDOX BROTHERS & ROSE Bear Family BCD 16796 Gonna Shake This Shack Tonight - Ugly & Slouchy ● CD $21.98
30 tracks, 70 mins, highly recommended
Part of Bear Family's fantastic (and my personal favorite so far) "Gonna Shake This Shack Tonight" series. All selections plucked from their Columbia records output between 1952 - 1957, including I'll Make Love To You from their first session for the label. This disk is chock full of upbeat Hillbilly Boogie, Honky Tonk and proto-Rock-a-Billy. Pure entertainment whether they are delivering a mile-a-minute rendition of The Carlisles classic No Help Wanted, or their self penned classics Ugly And Slouchy/ Paul Bunyan Love/ Death Of Rock And Roll/ Dig A Hole (in The Cold, Cold Ground)/ Stop Whistlin' Wolf, etc. Also includes fine Rose Maddox solo outings I'm A Little Red Caboose/ You Won't Believe This/ Fountain of Youth, and I'll Go Steppin' Too. They were a fearless group that we get to follow off of the beaten Country path with their covers of LaVern Baker and Mickey and Sylvia among others. Maddox Bros and Rose were such a great outfit, totally influential to the birth of rock 'n' roll and this collection is pretty much a perfect sampling of their 1950's material. Comes with beautiful booklet with grand notes by Deke Dickerson, discography and great pictures. (JM)

 
WADE MAINER Gusto 0957 I'm Not Looking Backward ● CD $10.98
2 CDs, 37 tracks, 103 mins, very highly recommended
Wonderful collection of old time and bluegrass singing and playing featuring the excellent singer and banjo player Wade Mainer who started his recording career in the mid 30s along his with his brother Joseph Emmett (J.E.) Mainer. This set features all of Wade's recordings for King cut in 1947, 1951 and 1961 including five previously unissued tracks. The first two sessions from 1947 and March 1951 are very much in the old time style with fine vocal harmonies on a selection of mostly gospel songs. By the third session in November, 1951 the music had transitioned into bluegrass and the April 1961 sessions is traditional style bluegrass gospel that's as good as it gets with wonderful vocal harmonies from guitarist Owen Bloodworth and fiddle from Ed Bryant. Several of the tracks from this session feature the powerful solo vocals of Wade's wife Julia. This session is presented in true stereo for the first time and the sound throughout is superb and the 16 page illustarted booklet has informative notes by Dick Spottswood. (FS)

 
LOUISE MASSEY & THE WESTERNERS B.A.C.M. 173 Ridin' High, 1933-1941 ● CD $14.98
22 tracks recorded between 1933 and 1941 by this fine Western flavored family group.
LOUISE MASSEY & THE WESTERNERS: Beautiful Texas/ Bunkhouse Jamboree/ Dixie Medley/ Going Down To Santa Fe Town/ Gol Darn Wheel/ If Jesse James Rode Again/ Mary Had A Little Lamb/ New River Train/ Out On Loco Range/ Play Me That Single Time Jazz/ Polly Wolly Doodle/ Pop Goes The Weasel/ Pretty Boy Floyd/ Raggin' The Blues At The Old Piano/ Ridin' High/ Rounded Up In Glory/ Sweet Mama Tree Top Tall/ The Santa Fe Trail/ There's An Empty Cot In The Bunkhouse Tonight/ Tug Boat & Piney Woods/ Twinkle Twinkle Little Star/ Whatcha Gonna Do When The Rent Comes ' Round

 
BILL MONROE Bear BCD 16637 My Last Days On Earth ● CD $129.98
Four CD set with 89 tracks from the twilight years of the career of King Of Bluegrass. Includes collaborations with Waylon Jennings, John Hartford, The Oak Ridge Boys, Johnny Cash, Ralph Stanley, Jim & Jesse, Carl Story and others. Includes hardcover book.

 
NO SPEED LIMIT Arhoolie 521 Sweet Virginia ● CD $12.98
15 tracks, 56 min., highly recommended
High energy bluegrass from one of the most talented (individually and together) young groups around. This Virginia band has spent their lives soaking up traditional country and bluegrass music from their local environs and beyond. And while, as their name presumably indicates, they can keep pace with a chain saw, they can also slow down (as they do on New East Virginia Blues) and play a hauntingly beautiful traditional tune. Banjo ace Steve Bar contributes impressive originals that detail his admiration for his hometown and the people in it--a refreshing attitude, to be sure. Vocalist Amber Collins is apparently only a teenager, but it seems difficult to believe based on her incredible pipes (listen to Quecreek and Ruby for proof). Impressive. (JC)

 
DOYE O'DELL B.A.C.M. 172 If Tears Were Gold ● CD $14.98
27 tracks, 67 minutes, highly recommended
A Texas native whose primary audience was rural central and southern Californians, Doye O'Dell was essentially a West Coast Red Foley. His recording career spanning the late '40s into the mid-'50s, O'Dell sang in a peppy, upbeat style that was well suited for radio and the era's juke boxes. As on the best West Coast country records, the vocals were bracketed with hot fiddle, steel and guitar leads. None of the musicians are identified, but fiddler Harold Hensley is a likely participant. Sharp-eared listeners can probably spot Jack Rivers, Jimmy Bryant and Speedy West on some tracks. This B.A.C.M collection complements an earlier Cattle anthology, emphasizing O'Dell's '50s material, including ten tracks from an elusive 1956 dime-store LP. Seven cuts are from O'Dell's 1947-48 Exclusive 78s, three come from Mercury and the remaining seven are Intro sides from 1951-53. Sound is above average for B.A.C.M. Bryan Chalker's notes read like an essay question on an ill-prepared history student's exam, but so what? The music smokes, and that's what matters. (DS)
Also available Cattle CCD 250 Bath Tub Blues CD $18.98 A solid anthology of Doye O'Dell's 1947-49 Exclusive output, including the title track, Dear Okie/ Lookin' Poor But Feelin' Rich/ Tennessee and twenty-three others. Despite what revisionists would make you believe, O'Dell's regional hit waxing of Rudy Sooter's Dear Okie spoke to more displaced Dust Bowl refugees than Woody Guthrie's celebrated 1940 ballads ever did. Great backing from Speedy West, Jimmy Bryant, Jerry Byrd, Jack Rivers and others. No duplication with the B.A.C.M. set above.
DOYE O'DELL: According To The Evidence/ Bow Your Head And Pray/ Candy Man/ Diesel Smoke/ Horses Women And Wine/ I Signed On The Dotted Line/ I Want More Mustard On My Hot Dog/ If Tears Were Gold/ It Makes No Difference Now/ It Won't Be Texas To You/ Left My Gal In The Mountains/ Mabel, Mabel/ Man Behind The Throttle/ My Little Red Wagon/ Oklahoma Hills/ Old Boy/ Old Shep/ Ole Tex Kringle/ Peekin' Peekin' Peekin'/ Pretty Woman For The Boss/ Red River Valley/ San Antonio Rose/ That's Just My Hand You're Holding Not My Heart/ There's A Shamrock Growing In Texas/ Two Eyes Two Lips But No Heart/ When My Sunshine Goes Walking In The Rain/ You're The Only Star In My Blue Heaven

 
TEXAS JIM ROBERTSON B.A.C.M. 175 Purple Night On The Prairie ● CD $14.98
24 tracks, 66 minutes, good
Had Manhattan emerged as country music's hub in the years after World War II, Texas Jim Robertson and Rosalie Allen would reign as the genre's dominant king and queen. Today both are virtually forgotten. Postwar country collectors shun their 78s, this Robertson reissue suggests why. A Texas native long based in New Jersey, Robertson sang ersatz Western material and often sexist, tavern-friendly novelties in a resonant bass-baritone reminiscent of Tex Ritter. Though occasionally backed by inspired takeoff musicians, Robertson's accompanists were more often New York union members with no understanding of Southern or even Southwestern music. Some tracks have a clarinet and accordion-based backing ala the Three Suns. In fact, one 1950 track features the Three Suns! Several of the more successful cuts feature an uncredited Chet Atkins, Homer Haynes and Jethro Burns. On Jaw Jaw Yap Yap Yap, a bored Burns wryly plays The Third Man Theme behind Robertson's vocal. Thanks to radio and television visibility in one of the country's densest population centers, Robertson apparently moved a lot of shellac; he stayed on the Bluebird/RCA Victor roster for nearly sixteen years. This reissue opens a window to anyone interested in probing this overlooked niche in country music history. However, more casual listeners will likely find little of merit here. The sound quality is generally good. Brian Chalker provides a thumbnail on Robertson's tragic life. (DS)
TEXAS JIM ROBERTSON: A Pretty Woman Is A Deadly Weapon/ Birmingham Woman/ Bouncin' Along/ Don't Angel Me You Little Devil/ Gone Fishin'/ I'm Gonna Be Long Gone/ If You've Got The Money I've Got The Time/ Jaw Jaw Yap Yap Yap/ Let Me In/ Letter I'm Mailing To You/ Lost Deep In The Bottom Of The Sea/ Memories Of Wedding Bells/ Moon And The Water And Miz O'Reilly's Daughter/ My Pony's Hair Turned Grey/ Purple Night On The Prairie/ Rodger Young/ Rubber Knuckle Sam/ Sweet Baby (Come Back To Where You Belong)/ Talk To The Boss In The Sky/ The Cowboy Isn't Speaking To His Horse/ There's A Heart In The Heart Of The Rockies/ Way Down In Texas Where The Bluebonnets Grew/ Windy Ben/ You Can't Do Nothin' With A Woman

 
THE SONS OF THE PIONEERS/ ROY ROGERS Varese 66753 The Republic Years ● CD $14.98
A selection of 20 songs from the Republic studios vaults featuring songs recorded for use in various Roy Rogers movies filmed between 1943 and 1951. Includes solo efforts by Roy, songs by The Sons Of The Pioneers and some together. Includes My Saddle Pals And I/ The Everlasting Hills Of Oklahoma/ My Adobe Hacienda/ I'm An Old Cowhand (From The Rio Grande)/ Tumbling Tumbleweeds/ Mexicali Rose/ Don't Fence Me In/ The Cowboy Jubilee/ Lights Of Old Santa Fe/ Ride, Ranger, Ride/ Red River Valley and more.

 
LARRY SPARKS Rebel 1806 40 ● CD $14.98
16 tracks, 52 mins, highly recommended
Larry Sparks is one of the greatest singers in bluegrass. He started his career in 1964 working with The Stanley Brothers and when Carter died in 1966 Ralph chose Larry to fill Carter's mighty shoes. Larry subsequently struck out on his own and over the years has recorded many superb albums beautifully mixing old and new material. This recent album celebrates his 40th year of performing and finds him joined by a wide array of top bluegrass and country performers including The Whites, Alison Kraus, Vince Gill, Rhonda Vincent, The Marshall Family, Ralph Stanley, Ricky Skaggs, Tom T. Hall and others but in spite of the talent present the focus is squarely on Larry's beautiful and soulful vocals with the guests adding icing to the cake. The material is a mix of secular and sacred, new and old including georgia Peaches/ John Deere Tractor/ 1-800-DO-U-CARE/ Tennessee/ Sharecropper's Son/ Listening To the Wind/ It's Too Late To Walk The Floor/ New Highway, etc. Larry is also a superb guitar player and gets to show just how good he is on Carter's Blues. Another excellent album from this exceptional performer. (FS)

 
THE STANLEY BROTHERS Rebel 1115 On Radio ● CD $15.98
32 tracks, 71 mins, highly recommended
Back in stock. This CD reissues material first available on two LP's of radio shows sponsored by homebuilder Jim Walter in 1960. The disc is a fascinating document, complete with Carter Stanley's heartfelt pitches and the down home introductions, dedications and comedy skits. These recordings catch the Stanley's at an odd time in their careers. King Records boss Syd Nathan had taken to recording the brothers sans fiddle and mandolin, partly because he hated violins, and so mandolin and banjo player Bill Napier is featured here as lead guitarist. He proves to be an outstanding player, with a punchy, intricate style that owes a lot to his mandolin training. Syd Nathan notwithstanding, the greatly underrated fiddler Chubby Anthony is present here on many cuts, and Ralph Mayo also wields the bow on a few cuts. There are twenty-six cuts, along with two commercials and several renditions of the Stanley's theme. Most of the selections are familiar, but the live feel and unusual personnel make this a valuable addition to any collection. The singing, especially the trios and quartets, is wonderful. Songs and tunes include Roll In My Sweet Baby's Arms/ Black Mountain Blues/ How Mountain Girls Can Love/ Pig In A Pen/ Uncle Pen (!)/ Heaven/ He'll Set Your Fields On Fire, the inevitable comedy skit How Far To Little Rock and many others. (RP)

 
STRINGBEAN Gusto 0956 Barn Yard Banjo Pickin' ● CD $10.98
2 CDs, 31 tracks, 66 mins, highly recommended
A vast improvement over the last, rather paltry CD that we got from this company, this outing has great packaging with an informative booklet and lots of great pictures, and concentrates this time on the music instead of the comedy. Ole' String was a hell of a banjo picker and a competent singer, much of which is lost from his comedy and his associations with the Grand Ole Opry and the Hee-Haw T.V. show. Stringbean was not only a veteran of the Bill Monroe band (his replacement was a guy named Earl Scruggs), but he was also protāgā of the great Uncle Dave Macon. All of the tracks on this are pulled from his records released in the early sixties, which are heavy on old standards and Dave Macon numbers (his album from 1962 was A Salute To Dave Macon). Fantastic renditions throughout of songs like Polly/ Birdie/ Run Rabbit Run/ Cripple Creek/ Ida Red/ John Henry/ How Many Biscuits Can You Eat and--one of my personal favorites--I'm The Man Who Rode The Mule Around The World (JM)

 
T. TEXAS TYLER B.A.C.M. 182 Country Boy ● CD $14.98
24 tracks recorded between 1949 and 1953 by this popular and distinctive country singer with his trademark growl. There's no duplication witht he reissues on Bronco Buster or Cattle. Includes Cray baby Heart/ You'll Still Be In My Heart/ A Million Teardrops/ Solitaie/ When The White Azaleas Start Blooming/ Black Jack david/ Beautiful Life (Life's Evening Sun)/ let's Fly Away, etc.
T.TEXAS TYLER: A Million Teardrops/ Beautiful Life (life‘s Evening Sun)/ Black Jack David/ Country Boy/ Cry Baby Heart/ Dad Gave My Dog Away/ Fireman And Engineer's Ball/ Gals Don't Mean A Thing/ Honky Tonk Gal/ I Was The Last One To Know/ I'll Hate Myself Tomorrow For Loving You Tonight/ It's My Heart It's My Conscience/ Just Out Of Reach/ Kiss Me Like Crazy/ Lets Fly Away/ Little Miss Muffet/ Old Blue/ She Wouldn't Do For You/ Solitaire/ Tired Of It All/ Wasted Tears/ When The White Azaleas Start Blooming/ You'll Never Break My Trusting Heart Again/ You'll Still Be In My Heart

 
VARIOUS ARTISTS Bear Family BCD 16844 The Deep Roots Of Johnny Cash ● CD $23.98
24 tracks, 67 mins, highly recommended
Every angle on the Johnny Cash legacy is being celebrated/ milked and this is actually the second "Roots of Johnny Cash" CD that we have seen this year. These CDs are retrospectives of artists and songs that Johnny Cash either covered or was notably influenced by. No surprise, Bear Family have put out the better of the two, with a much more varied selection of performers with a booklet containing fantastic facts and provincial pictures. Three tracks by Leadbelly, three tracks by Jimmie Rodgers, two tracks from Bing Crosby, tracks by Lonnie Donegan, Merle Travis, Paul Robeson, you get the picture. All in all this is a brilliant, if opportunistic compilation. (JM)
THE BLUE SKY BOYS: Down On The Banks Of The Ohio/ Mary Of The Wild Moor/ JUNE CARTER & CARL SMITH: Time`s A-Wastin`/ THE CARTER FAMILY: The Winding Stream/ BING CROSBY: Danny Boy/ Galway Bay/ VERNON DALHART: The Engineer's Dying Child/ JIMMIE DAVIS: You Are My Sunshine/ LONNIE DONEGAN: Rock Island Line/ BURL IVES: The Wayfaring Stranger/ BRADLEY KINCAID: I'll Take You Home Again, Kathleen/ The Letter Edged In Black/ LEADBELLY: Cotton Fields (In Them Cotton Fields Back Home)/ On A Monday (I Got Stripes)/ Pick A Bale Of Cotton/ MCMICHENS'S MELODY MEN: Missouri Waltz/ GOEBEL REEVES: The Tramp's Mother (There's A Mother Always Waiting There At Home)/ TEX RITTER: Sam Hall/ PAUL ROBESON: Drink To Me Only With Thine Eyes/ JIMMIE RODGERS: Blue Yodel, #1 (T For Texas)/ My Mother Was A Lady/ The One Rose/ MERLE TRAVIS: Dark As A Dungeon/ JOHNNY WESTERN: Delia's Gone

 
VARIOUS ARTISTS Compadre 63122 A Tribute To Billy Joe Shaver - Live ● CD $15.98
15 tracks, 67 mins, recommended
In honor of Billy Joe Shaver's 65th birthday the old outlaw had a bunch of his motley friends throw him a party/ tribute. What you get is a great live show with all kinds of talent showing up to pay tribute by performing Shaver's songs or songs of their own inspired by the man. Shaver does 3 songs solo and one with Diamondback Texas. To add to that you get Guy Clark doing Randall Knife, Joe Ely with Honky Tonk Masquerade, and so on, with appearances by Bruce Robinson, Kelly Willis, Jimmy Dale Gilmore, Robert Earl Keen, Dale Watson, and many more. Bonus video of "Waco Moon" by Todd Snider. Must have been a hellofa night. (JM)

 
VARIOUS ARTISTS County 3532 Religion Is A Fortune ● CD $15.98
19 tracks, highly recommended
A close cousin of shape-note gospel singing, sacred harp singing generally confines itself to a pre-Civil War repertoire, mainly from a single text called, predictably, The Sacred Harp (1844). This wonderful release showcases various southern sacred harp groups recorded primarily between 1928-34, including the better-known Allison's Sacred Harp Singers and the more obscure Daniels-Deason Sacred Harp Singers. Mostly a cappella (or with bare bones accompaniment), these recordings are all but devoid of pretension and commerciality, steeped instead in an unmistakably heart-felt spirituality rarely captured on wax. Other performers include the Okeh Atlanta Sacred Harp Singers, Fa-So-La Singers, Lee Well's Sacred Heart Singers, Roswell Sacred Heart Singers, Dye's Sacred Heart Singers, and the Pioneer Sacred Heart Singers. Informative booklet notes, well-researched and a pleasure to read. (JC)

 
VARIOUS ARTISTS Dust-To-Digital 06 I Belong To The Band ● CD $15.98
Gorgeous collection of that moving gospel style mostly sung at white Southern churches called Sacred Harp. It includes commercial recordings from the 20s and 30s, private recordings from the 50s and 60s and recordings made this year of the Henager-Union Sacred Convention. Groups range from quartets to large congregations.
ALABAMA SACRED HARP SINGERS UNDER DIRECT: Cuba/ ALABAMA SACRED HARP SINGERS: Present Joys/ DANIELS-DEASON SACRED HAP SINGERS: Coronation/ THE DENSON QUARTET: Christian Soldier/ S. WHIT DENSON Ė A ONE-VOICE QUARTETTE: New Morning Sun/ DENSON'S SACRED HARP SINGERS OF ARLEY AL: Ninety-Fifth/ DENSON'S SACRED HARP SINGERS OF ARLEY, A: The Christian's Hope/ DENSON-PARRIS SACRED HARP SINGERS: The Good Old Way/ HENAGAR-UNION SACRED HARP CONVENTION: Antioch/ Consecration/ Corinth/ Farewell Anthem/ Invocation/ Marlborough/ Morning/ Ninety-Fifth/ Save, Lord, Or We Parish/ The Child Of Grace/ The Morning Trumpet/ Traveling Pilgrim/ Whitestown/ HUGGINS & PHILIPS SACRED HARP SINGERS: Blooming Youth/ THE ORIGINAL SACRED HARP CHOIR: The Christian Warfare/ ROSWELL SACRED HARP SINGERS: Concord/ Jubilee/ Reverential Anthem/ Sabbath Morning/ ROSWELL SACRED HARP QUARTET: Weeping Way/ ROSWELL SACRED HARP SINGERS: White/ LEE WELLS & HIS JASPER ALABAMA SACRED HARP S: North Port

 
VARIOUS ARTISTS Dust-To-Digital 07 Art Of Field Recording ● CD $14.98
24 tracks, 60 mins, highly recommended
Wonderful collection of field recordings collected by folk musician, painter and art professor Art Rosenbaum over the past 50 years. Art has traveled extensively in the Eastern and South Eastern and a number of his recordings have been reissued on LP and CD but next year Dust-To-Digital will be issuing a five CD box set of his recordings and this 24 track collection is a preview of that set and judging by what is on display here that set will be an essential purchase. This sampler includes Art's first recording from 1956 of Mexican Epifanio Sanchez and his group to a recording made this year of 93 year old gospel singer Sister Fleeta Mitchell who went to school with Blind Willie McTell at the Georgia School For The Blind in Macon. A great variety of music is featured including blues, fiddle tunes, unaccompanied ballads, work songs, Sacred Harp singing and more. Only a handful of these performers have been recorded elsewhere but the musical standard is very high. Comes with 20 page booklet with photos, paintings, detailed notes and recording details. (FS)
CECIL BARFIELD: Georgia Blues/ DOC AND LUCY BARNES: Free Go Lily/ EDDIE BOWLES: Blues/ MABEL CAWTHORN: Tom Watson Tune/ LAWRENCE AND VAUGHN ELLER: Fly Around My Blue-Eyed Gal/ REV. HOWARD FINSTER: Five To My Five/ GEORGIA SACRED HARP CONVENTION: Eternal Day/ OLLIE GILBERT: Who Killed Poor Robin?/ GOLDEN RIVER GRASS GROUP: Goin' Down the Road Feelin' Bad/ SHIRLEY GRIFFITH: Big Road Blues/ BERT HARE: I'm Dying, Mother/ BUELL KAZEE: Big Foot Feller/ DWIGHT "RED" LAMB: Danish Galop/ FROSTY LAMB AND BUZZ FOUNTAIN: 12th Street Rag/ FIDEL MARTIN: La Grondeuse (The Scolding Woman)/ MCINTOSH COUNTY SHOUTERS: Eve and Adam (Pickin' Up Leaves)/ SISTER FLEETA MITCHELL AND REV. WILLIE MAE EBERHARD: Satan, Your Kingdom Must Come Down/ RAY RHODES: Fred Adams/ EPIFANIO SANCHEZ AND GROUP: Carabina Treinta-Treinta (30-30 Rifle)/ RALPH SHECKEL: Tony Gave a Picnic/ DR. C. B. SKELTON: The Miller's Will/ JOHN W. SUMMERS: Brickyard Joe/ GORDON TANNER AND SMOKY JOE MILLER: Billy in the Low Ground/ HENRY GRADY TERRELL: Old John Henry Died on the Mountain

 
VARIOUS ARTISTS Jasmine 452 Hixville - We'll Have A Time, Yes-Siree ● CD $14.98
25 tracks, 63 mins, highly recommended
Terrific collection of extremely obscure country recordings cut in 1954 and 1955 as "custom pressings" by the Starday label. Starday would record and manufacture recordings by any artist who came to their studios and was able to pay the charges and the resulting recording was issued on a label of the artists' own choosing. Most of these recordings were pressed in very small quantities and are very rare today and although most of the artists here had not previously recorded and most never recorded again the standard of music here is very high and remind one how much great musical talent was out there in that era that never made it to commercial recordings. Most of the music is solid Texas honky tonk with fine vocal and excellent instrumental arrangements. ARtists includes Johnny Sutherland, Leo Ogletree, Ray Mayo, Billie & Gordon Hamrick (fine old time gospel), Jim Cunningham (a particularly nice performance), Al Warwick, Joe Gibson, Otis Parker, Jerry Hopkins and others. This is supposed to be the first in a series drawn from these rare recordings and bodes well for future issues. (FS)

 
VARIOUS ARTISTS Jasmine 3576 Griddle Greasin' Daddies & Dirty Cowboys ● CD $11.98
24 tracks, 65 mins, highly recommended
It sais that is a collection of risque songs but it seems to me a pretty innocent collection of songs about birthday cakes, oiling up griddles, winding up clocks, playing with dogs, having surgery, working in a butcher' shop, having freckles, chicken plucking and lots of other things that are part of country folks life. The musicians discussing these innocent endeavors includes Billy HUghes, Roy Lee Brown, Bucky Bates, Hank Penny, Charlie Aldrich, Buffalo Johnson, Homer Clemons & His Texas Swingbillies, Jimmie Ballard, Randy Hughes and other God-fearing folk who enjoy making some mighty fine music. Double entendre - my ass! (FS)
CHARLIE ALDRICH: Kinseyís Book/ JIMMIE BALLARD: Birthday Cake Boogie/ Chicken Plucker/ Sheís Got Something/ BUCKY BATES: Who Winds Your Clock/ ROY LEE BROWN: Ice Man Song/ JOHNNY BUCKETT: Griddle Greasing Daddy/ BILLY CASTEEL: Hollywood Mama/ HOMER ZEKE CLEMONS: Sell The Coldest Stuff In Town/ HOMER CLEMONS AND HIS TEXAS SWINGBILLIES: Operation Blues/ BETTY CORAL with RAYMOND McCOLLISTER: Chilli Dippin' Baby/ DOYLE FRANKLIN: If The Blues Donít Kill Me/ COTTON HENRY: Eskimo Nell/ BILLY HUGHES: Take Your Hands Off It (The Birthday Cake Song)/ RANDY HUGHES: Tappiní That Thing/ BUFFALO JOHNSON: TainítBig Enough/ EDDIE MILLER: Motel Time/ I Like What You Got/ THE NOV-ELETTES: Butcher Shop Blues/ HANK PENNY: Let Me Play With Your Poodle/ The Freckle Song/ T. TEXAS TYLER: I Want To Learn To Do It/ JOHNNY WHITE with SKEETS McDONALD: The Tattooed Lady/ THE YORK BROTHERS: Sixty Minute Man

 
VARIOUS ARTISTS New West 6097 Outlaw Country - Live From Austin, Texas ● CD $16.98
14 Tracks, highly recommended
Live from Austin City Limits recorded in 1996. Cast of outlaws include Willie Nelson, Waylon Jennings, Kris Kristofferson, Billy Joe Shaver and Kimmie Rhodes. This is the CD companion to the fantastic DVD with all of the same cuts.

 
VARIOUS ARTISTS Proper BOX 110 The Louisiana Hayride Story ● CD $26.98
4 CDs, 111 tracks, 5 hours, highly recommended
The 68-page booklet chronicles the creation and development of the Louisiana Hayride, and the 4 CDs include the songs played by the artists during their appearance on the show. With the exception of a pair of Elvis Presley live cuts from 1955 (Tweedle Dee and Maybelline), the songs here are the studio versions issued by such labels as King, Starday, Abbott, Sun, Hickory, Mercury, Chess, Capital, Imperial, Decca, 4-Star, Columbia, Bullett, and many others. Recording dates range from 1948-58, and include Bailes Brothers, Hank Williams, York Brothers, Kitty Wells, Wayne Raney, Zeb Turner, Mercer Brothers, Slim Whitman, Claude King, Jim Reeves, Slim Willett, Jimmy Lee, Davis Sisters, Tibby Edwards, Jimmy Newman, and many more. Excellent sound quality, packaging, graphic design, booklet notes, photos, and price. (JC)
CHARLIE ADAMS: Stop Your Bawlin' Baby/ BUDDY ATTAWAY: Freight Train Blues/ I'm Sitting On Top Of The World/ THE BAILES BROTHERS: Has The Devil Got A Mortgage On You?/ My Heart Echoes/ Whiskey Is The Devil (In Liquid Form)/ CAROLYN BRADSHAW: Oh I Like It/ Say No No No/ THE CARLISLES: No Help Wanted/ JOHNNY CASH: Cry Cry Cry/ Folsom Prison Blues/ ZEKE CLEMENTS: Brown's Ferry Boogie/ RILEY CRABTREE: Shackles And Chains/ THE DAVIS SISTERS: I Forgot More Than You'll Ever Know/ ARLIE DUFF: Lie Detector/ TIBBY EDWARDS: Cry Cry Darlin'/ If You Love Me Let Me Know/ WERLY FAIRBURN: Nothin' But Lovin'/ JACK FORD: I Understand (Just How You Feel)/ Yankee Dime/ TILLMAN FRANKS: Hi-Tone Poppa/ LEFTY FRIZZELL: Give Me More More More (Of Your Kisses)/ RUDY GRAYZELL: It Ain't My Baby (And I Ain't Gonna Rock It)/ TEX GRIMSLEY: Shuffle On Down/ Walking The Dog/ GOLDIE HILL: I Let The Stars Get In My Eyes/ Why Talk To My Heart/ TOMMY HILL: The Life That I'm Living/ HOOT & CURLEY: Liniment & Turpentine/ Million Dollar's Worth Of Memories/ JOHNNY HORTON: All For The Love Of A Girl/ First Train Headin' South/ Ridin' The Sunshine Special/ The S.S.Lureline/ PAUL HOWARD: Hora Sta Cotton Picker/ The Boogie's Fine Tonight/ SHOT JACKSON: You Can't Get The Country Out Of The Boy/ JIMMY & JOHNNY: Can't You Won't You/ JOHNNIE & JACK: For Old Times Sake/ Poison Love/ Sing Tom Kitty/ GEORGE JONES: What Am I Worth/ Why Baby Why/ OAKIE JONES: Hillbilly Bessie/ MERLE KILGORE: Everybody Needs A Little Lovin'/ CLAUDE KING: She's My Baby/ Take It Like A Man/ THE KING SACRED QUARTET: Turn Your Radio On/ JIMMY LEE: Go Ahead And Go/ HANK LOCKLIN: Stumpy Joe/ MADDOX BROS & ROSE: Rock All Our Babies To Sleep/ South/ THE MERCER BROTHERS: If Nickels Were Dimes/ It Ain't No Use/ Just You Wait And See/ No Place To Hang My Hat/ CLYDE MOODY: Tend To Your Business/ GEORGE MORGAN: Candy Kisses/ MOON MULLICAN: Good Deal Lucille/ JIMMY C. NEWMAN: Daydreamin'/ JIMMY NEWMAN: Diggy Liggy Lo/ CARL PERKINS: Gone! Gone! Gone!/ WEBB PIERCE: High Geared Daddy/ Wondering/ ELVIS PRESLEY: Maybellene/ Tweedle Dee/ WAYNE RANEY: Why Don't You Haul Off And Love Me/ JIM REEVES: Bimbo/ Butterfly Love/ Drinking Tequila/ Mexican Joe/ Then I'll Stop Loving You/ RUSTY & DOUG: So Lovely Baby/ HARMIE SMITH: I'll Not Be Around/ HANK SNOW: The Anniversary Of A Broken Heart/ RED SOVINE: Please Don't Let Me Love You/ You're Barking Up The Wrong Tree Now/ TEXAS BILL STRENGTH: I'm Doing A Peach Of A Job/ AL TERRY: Hate Me Not/ HANK THOMPSON: Whoa Sailor/ FLOYD TILLMAN: I Almost Lost My Mind/ MITCHELL TOROK: Caribbean/ TOMMY TRENT: Paper Boy Boogie/ ZEB TURNER: Big Fat Papa/ BILLY WALKER: Anything Your Heart Desires/ WAYNE WALKER: Now Is The Time For Love/ BILLY WALLACE: Dog Hauled Around/ KITTY WELLS: Gathering Flowers For The Master's Bouquet/ I Heard The Jukebox Playing/ It Wasn't God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels/ Love Or Hate/ SLIM WHITMAN: Birmingham Jail/ I'm Casting My Lasso Towards The Sky/ Love Song Of The Waterfall/ Rose Marie/ TEDDY WILBURN: Court Of Justice/ SLIM WILLETT: Don't Let The Stars Get In Your Eyes/ CURLEY WILLIAMS: Just A Pickin' & A Singin'/ Woe Is Me/ HANK WILLIAMS: Jambalaya (On The Bayou)/ Lovesick Blues/ Move It On Over/ On The Banks Of The Old Ponchartrain/ Settin' The Woods On Fire/ MAC WISEMAN: Four Walls Around Me/ I'll Still Write Your Name In The Sand/ BOOTS WOODALL: Since You've Been Gone/ SHEB WOOLEY: Your Papa Ain't Steppin' Anymore/ THE YORK BROTHERS: Hamtramck Mama/ New Mississippi River Blues/ FARON YOUNG: I Heard The Jukebox Playing

 
TAMMY WYNETTE Intersound 51981 Singing My Song ● CD $15.98
11 songs, 24 mins, fans only
The Queen of Country Music ("I didn't vote for her.I thought we were an autonomous collective. Help! Help, I'm being oppressed!") caught live very late in her career. Identical set on both CD and DVD. Recorded in an intimate theatre setting (probably somewhere in Branson, MO.) The lady sings her hits, is in fine voice and puts in a solid, if rather uninspired, performance. (JM)

 
FARON YOUNG Bear Family BCD 16801 Gonna Shake This Shack Tonight - Hi-Tone Poppa ● CD $21.98
32 tracks, 72 mins, recommended
Part of Bear Family's terrific "Gonna Shake This Shack Tonight" series. This covers this country legend's career at Capitol records spanning 1951 - 1961. Faron Young was definitely the chameleon of country. These tracks take you from his early years ripping off Hank Williams (possibly in several ways), through honky tonk and half-hearted rockabilly (with astounding instrumental, if not vocal performances,) all the way up to his immense Country-politan smash Hello Walls, easily his best known song. Some of the real magic on these cuts comes from his always fantastic backing bands, which featured Roger Miller, Johnny Paycheck and other soon to be well known Country artists. Outstanding liner notes by Deke Dickerson. There are also some great pics in the booklet of Faron with Elvis, Gene Vincent and other luminaries. (JM)

 

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