Don Gibson- I Love You So Much It Hurts

This was one dollar.  Bought it for the songs on it, most notably ” Born To Lose”, “Sweet Dreams”, and “The Streets Of Laredo”. I also think when I bought it, I was confusing folk singer and reporter Bob Gibson(a major influence on Phil Ochs) with Don Gibson of this album. 

Well,  Don Gibson,”The Poet of Sadness”, was born in 1928 in Shelby, NC. He was a talented song writer as well as country performer.  As a performer, he had a slew of hits from the late 50’s to early 70’s. As a songwriter, he is best known for writing “I Can’t Stop Loving You” which was a hit for many people, including Ray Charles, who almost made it his signature tune, behind “Georgia”. Don would die of natural causes in 2003.  They names a Theater/Venue after him in his home town.

Link to the Don Gibson Theater

This album, released in 1969 on RCA Camden, was pretty well into his career when it came out.  It contains Gibson’s version of “Sweet Dreams” which was an earlier hit for Patsy Cline.  It also has a bunch of other good numbers.  Decent album.

For a sample, I went not with one of Gibson’s originals, but with his interpretation of a country standard, covered by everyone; “Born To Lose” , written by Ted Daffan. Born in Beauregaurd Parrish, LA, Daffan spent some time in Texas, working at in instrument repair shop in Houston in the 1930’s.  Just throwing in some local color.  I probably highlighted this fact the last time I posed a Daffan number.  What can I say? I like to spotlight Houston.

Good Album.  Satisfactory.

VA- Round Up

Yesterday marked the passing of a legend of Pop/Country music, Glen Campbell.  Campbell had been suffering from Alzheimer’s since 2011 and finally succumbed to the disease at age 81.

Obit from New York Times

Obit from Rolling Stone

An interesting perspective from Collaborator Jim Webb

 

Campbell, born outside of Little Rock, Ark, in 193, picked up guitar at age 4 and was performing on radio by age 6.  He really cut his teeth in Los Angeles as a session musician and , what I find fascinating, he never learned to read music.  Despite this, his natural ability led him to become a member of “The Wrecking Crew” and by his count, appear on 586 recordings in 1963 alone.  His session work with the Beach Boys landed him a spot with the band when Brian Wilson stepped back from touring.

And finally, after putting out albums under his own name in the early 60’s, found success in 1967 with his version of “Gentle On My Mind”.  Of course bigger hits followed including a massively successful run of Jim Webb tunes which led to massive fame, tv shows, movies, record sales, marriages, divorces, alcoholism, drug addiction, recovery, and redemption. You know, the whole cycle.

How much appeal did Campbell have?  Well reading outside the attached articles, two things.  First, the massive amount of his records I see when I shop for used records.  This means that he sold a lot of albums. Second, the high number of appearances on country compilation albums, this being one of them (personally, I am not a great fan of country-pop, hence I do not have any of his albums.).  I had about 10 compilations to choose from with Campbell on them.

This collection, released by Capitol Records in 1969, features Campbell along with Bobbie Gentry, Al Martino, The Letterman, and Tennessee Ernie Ford.  Th e album features two songs from Campbell as well as one duet with Gentry from the album I featured on thus blog two years ago (for the record, it is “Little Green Apples” which I feel ranks among the worst songs ever written).  As further proof as Campbell’s legacy, the album features two songs of Webb’s, popularized by Campbell, “By the Time I get to Phoenix” and “Wichita Lineman”.  This was $1.  I probably bought it for Gentry’s cover of “Son of a Preacherman”, which is somewhat decent. Anyway, from this album, here is Campbell with Rod McKuen’s “The World I Used To Know”.

Rest In Peace Mr Campbell.

VA- Six Pack Vol1

There were many reasons I would buy this record.  It was only $1. It also contained two Willie Nelson songs as well as being produced(or compiled?) by the man himself.  Finally, it is a good little collection of outlaw / oddball country.  All these reasons aside, I got is as I never heard Ray Wylie Hubbard’s original version of “Up Against The WallRedneck Mother”.

Like most people in this state who spent time in bars, I was very familiar with Jeff Jeff Walker’s version (which was posted some time ago on this site).  So, when I saw the original on this, buying it was a done deal.  This record, released by Lone Star Records in association with Mercury, in 1978, also features Nelson, Cooder Browne, novelty country singer Don Bowman, Steve Fromholz, and the Geezinslaw Bros.  Apparently, Lone Star was Nelson’s own label.

For a sample, I really liked the instrumental, “Lonesome Rider” as performed by Cooder Browne, which is the name of the group and not a person.  I also wrongly thought that this was a Bob Wills’ standard. So I was wrong on two counts with this today. The band featured Larry Franklin on vocals and fiddle. who also recorded with Asleep At The Wheel. This is from the one album they released (on Lone Star).

I also really liked the Geezinslaw Bros.’ “Who’s A Fool”.  Hailing from Austin Tx, the Bros are really the comedy/musical duo of Sammy Allred and Son Smith.  They were active musically from sometime in the 50’s up into 2005.

Finally, you got to go with the girl you brought to the dance so here is Ray Wylie Hubbard’s classic, “Up Against The Wall Redneck Mother”. Hubbard, born in Soper, OK in 1946 is still active today.

Good Little Record.  Satisfactory.

Faron Young- Country Dance Favorites

This was $1.  It had enough songs that I liked on it.

About the only scene I liked in the Hank William’s bio-pic I Saw The Light, featured Faron Young (1932-1996) and his girl friend at the time, Billie Jean Jones.  In the movie, Williams slickly peels Jones off Young.  I am not sure how accurate this is , but it is true that Young introduced Jones to Williams.  The two would later marry.  After William’s death, Jones would marry his pal Johnny Horton, who would also some years later, making her a widow twice in the span of less than 10 years.

Anyway, on a happier note, there is this record from Mercury and Shreveport, LA native Young from 1964.  It was one of his more popular albums at the time, reaching #7 on the country charts.  A good little collection of dance songs from big name writers such as Mel Tillis, Belew & Stevenson, Don Gibson, and Bob Wills,  Young puts his honky tonk sound into these classics.

There are a lot of songs that I like on here including “Release Me”, “Am I That Easy To Forget”, “She Still Thinks I Care”, “I Can’t Stop Loving You”, and “San Antonio Rose”.  However I decided to go with “Honky Tonk Song” and “Faded Love”. I have been on a kick for the latter song for some reason as of late.

Good little album.  Satisfactory.

Al Dean- Mr Cotton Eyed Joe Plays For Urban Cowboys

If you would think about what are my most popular posts, they are not the big names or the popular records.  In contrast, they are the local and regional artists. The smaller a footprint one has on the web, the more hits my blog gets.  So among the top 5 posts was an album I had posted from this artist, Mr Cotton Eyed Joe himself, Al Dean. This was $4, by the way.

My earlier post on Dean.

I was saddened to hear that Dean had passed away from cancer in October of 2016 at the age of 85.  It was happy to hear though, that he was posthumously(just last month) inducted into the South Texas Music Hall of Fame.  There is an excellent story about Dean and this event from this blog below.

Blog post about Mr Cotton Eyed Joe

Yet another blog post.

As Dean’s bands have been family affairs, at times including his brothers, this album features his sons, and his wife Maxine.  This record , released by Kik-R Records from Houston, was obviously a marketing attempt to capitalize on the popularity of the movie, Urban Cowboy.  It is also my belief (which the blog above somewhat confirms), that Dean is responsible for the version of the song that most of us who grew up in this state remember. This is no small accomplishment and I can state without any sign of hyperbole, that this puts him in a signifcant place among Texas musicians.     They don’t play it anymore, but it was common place at sporting events, along with the crowd hollering “Bull Shit”.

Pretty good record.  All instrumentals though. If I knew this, I would have posted a few of the singing songs he did on the first record I posted, (Hell, if I knew he past, I would have posted “Roughneck Paycheck”, which was one of my favorites.  Anyway, this is a collection of popular country instrumentals.  I will have to note, however, that the hole on my copy is off center and as a result, the record’s sound is a tad off.  Other than that, great little album.

 

For a sample, I went with “Release Me”. I did not go with the namesake song (which is among one of my favorites) as I posted it from the last album.

Good little album. Satisfactory.  My respects to Mr Dean and his family.

 

Roy Head- A Head of His Time

This little gem was $4.  Not going to pass up music with Houston ties at this price.During Continental Club’s anniversary last year (or was it two years ago?), I saw Roy Head perform briefly.  I wish I would have stuck around to watch more.

Head, born in Three Rivers, TX in 1941, came to fame with his band the Traits and the single “Treat Her Right”, released by Houston’s own Don Robey.  A great example of Blue-Eyed Soul, the single was kept out of the #1 spot by the Beatles’ “Yesterday”. Head, as the singer, had a stage presence that rivaled James Brown.

Anyway, by the time the 70’s rolled around, Head was into country music and that is where this comes from. On one hand, it was a stretch from the sound he was doing in the Sixties On the other hand, Head was always pushing the boundaries of genres so it really made sense. The second of two albums released in 1976 as well as the second of three for ABC/Dot records, this album is a good collection of country tunes as well as standards.  Pretty good album.  It concludes with a rousing version of R&H’s “You’ll Never Walk Alone”.

Head, who lives in the Humble area, performs sporadically.  His son Sundance was on the Voice as well as American Idol.  Furthermore, the Chronicle did a story on Head last year that is pretty good.  I was a little taken back when I read about tricks  I thought was original about but in reality were already done by Head. Oh well.  It is good to admit when you are beat.

Link to Chron Story

In an earlier post this week, I mentioned that there were four songs from this month that I added to my guitar repertoire.  Two of them were posted yesterday.  The third is on this album and is presented here: “Angel With A Broken Wing”.  I particularly like the second verse.

Great little record. Satisfactory.

 

VA- 4 Kings of Country Music

This little gem was either $1 or $3, I can’t remember anymore.  I am leaning more to the $1 theory. But either way, you can’t go too wrong with this collection, which features hits from four of country music’s biggest stars the comedic Roger Miller, the sausage king Jimmy Dean, celebrated drunk riding mower-er George Jones, and Hee-Haw’s own Buck Owens.

This album, released by Nashville/ Starday Recordings in 1966, features previously released music.  Pretty good collection of works by these kings. I did not realize this until I read the back cover but all four artists were born in Texas despite leaving it for Nashville/ California.

For samples, I was really drawn towards two songs, George Jones’ “That’s The Way I Feel”, and Buck Owens’ “Down On The Corner Of Love”, which I believe was Owen’s first single.  Other than this and Miller’s “Poor Little John”, most of these songs I believe are from albums and b-sides. Overall, this is a really good collection of tunes.

Top Rated record.  Not much else to say about this. Woo-Hoo!  Quick post today!

Easy Pickin’- The Winning Combination- Xerox

This was $4 but looked interesting enough as I like to buy and review product or promo records.

The Easy Pickin’s group, I believe were from Stamford,which oddly enough was Xerox’s headquarters until 2007.  The group consisted of Barbara Allen on vocals, her husband Bill on guitar, mother of three Linda Shackleford on bass, Joe Knowlton on banjo, and Dave Raucsher on the mandolin, violin, and just about every other instrument.  According to the one piece of information I bothered looking at, the band had been around some twenty years or so, recording a live album at the Country Tavern Restaurant, where they gigged regularly.  It is said that they had a interesting repertoire between bluegrass standards as well as contemporary country hits.  The record does reflect this.

This record is a promotional record but for whom, I am unsure.  The records welcomes the holder as a proud member of the ISG team.  It also mentions FSM members which I assume is the Full Service Maintenance group.  The record encourages members to ” share points for service achievements focusing on machine reliability and response time”.  These points, in turn, can be translated “into merchandise gifts for you… and your family”.  So I am deducting that theses were given to Xerox service people who achieved departmental goals.  And this was back in the day when people were decently paid.

I am guessing this came out sometime in the seventies.  Pretty good mix of tunes. including “Luckenback Texas”, “Heaven is Just a Sin Away”, “Tennessee Stud”, and “Foggy Mountain Breakdown”.  Decent album.  Nothing that will make you radically re-look the way for see bluegrass, but not bad either.For a sample, I went with the theme song/jingle of the record, “The Winning Combination”. Decent record, overall, although I am sure I would have liked a monetary bonus more if I worked at Xerox.  Anyway, Satisfactory record.

John Schneider- Quiet Man

This was $2.40 at a discount.  I used to like getting celebrity records on this site but that was when I was unemployed and had all day to write post.  Those days have past.

John Schneider, born in Mount Kisco, NY in 1960, is best known for his portrayal of Beauregard “Bo” Duke from the Dukes of Hazard.  As a child from the 80’s, this was my favorite TV show.  Like most kids my age, I had a crush on Daisy Duke as well as hated shows when Bo and Luke’s cousins took over during contract disputes (or going on the NASCAR circuit as the show stated). Along with playing Chips, me and my pal used to play Dukes of Hazard but for some reason, I always had to be Luke (since my friend argued that his name was Jon, I was always Paunch in Chips). Back to Schneider, it should be noted that he had a re-occurring role as Superman’s adoptive father in Smallvile.

Not sure of those were simpler times or if we just turned an eye to casual racism.  Well my bet is on the latter but I do not want to turn this into a big debate.  I will say this: Sorrell Booke and James Best, who played Boss Hogg and Roscoe P Coltrane, were good friends and were allowed to ad-lib on set.  Best also taught acting classes later in his career and one of his students was a young Quentin Tarantino.  It was at Best’s classes where Tarantino met collaborators who would work on his films.

Schneider was able to parlay his popularity on Dukes to a successful music career.  He recorded ten albums (including a Christmas album with Dukes’ co-star Tom Wopat) with four Country #1 singles to his credit.  This was Schneider’s third album, released on the Scotti Brothers label in 1983.  It did not chart.

Decent album but I would have probably liked it more if I was a girl in the 80’s.  There are some decent moments.  As a whole, I really do not like much 80’s country so I am a bit biased to start with this. 

For a sample, I went with the old Johnny Burnette classic “Dreamin” which was released as a single.  It charted at #32 on the country chart.

Meh.  As stated above, do not like 80’s country and I am pretty much over the Dukes.  Not 10 anymore. I mean it sounds just as good as anything else from that decade, it is just not my proverbial cup of tea.

Jerry Reed- When You’re Hot, You’re Hot

This was a pretty massive record for Jerry Reed so buying t for $2.40 was a no brainer.  I originally planned on putting this album on the blog earlier but I think I was too country heavy the month I originally selected it so it fell into the unused pile.  This month, I found myself tired of listening to records so I picked this one from the pile to save me some time as I already had the songs downloaded.

The 70’s were a great time for Mr Reed, starring with Burt Reynolds in movies and releasing over twenty albums.  This was his biggest success, released in 1971 and reaching #2 on the Country charts, #45 overall.  The title track was the single from the album but was a massive hit, staying #1 on the Country chart for five weeks as well as cracking the overall Top 40 at #9.  Reed would win a Grammy for his efforts.  It was also referenced in his appearance on Scooby Doo which I am sure I posted on a prior Reed post.

The cover boasts the inclusion of the hit single “Amos Moses” which was also on his earlier album Georgia Sunshine.  It was a decent hit for Reed but not as big as the title track. The back cover describes it as a slow starter but that the label has always had faith in Reed.  It was also used in Grand Theft Auto’s San Andrea soundtrack.

Overall, this is a good little album.  The two fore-mentioned tracks alone make it worth buying.  There is also a lot of good country tunes as well as decent covers of Dylans’ “Don’t Think Twice It’s All Right” and Mel Tillis’ “Ruby, Don’t Take You Love To Town”.

For a sample, I went with “Big Daddy” which showcases a little of Reed’s guitar prowess (at least I am guessing it is Reed. Why wouldn’t it be?).

Great little record.  Satisfactory.