Richard Polasek and the Hub City Dutchmen- Polka Time in Texas

This was $1.60 with discount.  Being from Texas, I decided it would be worth checking out.  German and Czech settlers both of free will and of forced resettlement brought polka to Texas which is a great influence to Tejano music among others.

I could not find much info on either Richard Polasek or the Hub City Dutchmen (which are in none of the pictures) other than that the band was paid $10 per member per gig, Polasek’s mother died in 1976, and the last living member of Joe Patek’s Orchestra, Dan Malik, spent time in the band.  Malik would pass away in 2015. I was half tempted to call the number on the back of the album but I am not even sure if the area code(512) is still applicable (it’s not.  Yoakum is 361 country)

So really all I know is that this was from a polka band formed in 1965 from Yoakum, Texas, a town of nearly 6,000 on the border of Lavaca and Dewitt counties.It is the type of hill country in Texas that boasts a high number of German and Czech descendants.  Oddly enough at the time of this record, Lavaca County was known as the Polka Capital of Texas.  Today, that distinction goes to Fredericksburg by way of State Senate Concurrent Resolution No 99, 73rd Legislature, Regular Session (1993).

Not that I was really looking too deep into this anyway.  This record, released sometime on Dutch Records, features 12 polka tunes. Not much to say other than that.  The albums really delivers on what it promises; polka music.

For a sample, I decided to go with something a bit more contemporary, the band’s cover of good ol’ Hank Williams’ “Your Cheating Heart”. I also went with something a bit more traditional, “Helena Polka”.

Not that I am a huge polka fan or able to really discern good polka from bad, but this is what I expected the album to sound like and it is pretty decent.  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.

 

Willie Nelson- Country Willie

dscn6182And so begins another month of Donkey Show.  It seems like this year just started yesterday and now it is almost over.  Not doing the Christmas record thing this year.  If you are looking for some Christmas music, feel free to take advantage of this blogs Category selection of Christmas Music from the Menu.  Anyway, this record, with some water damage to the cover, was $1.  rs-115741-b2b86ab843ec2616844ca15dc6d42ac1239e0e9e

This record was a compilation album of Willie Nelson’s early efforts, released in 1975 at the start of Nelson’s defining Outlaw Country period.  It contains a few songs penned by Nelson such as the title track and “Night Life”, as well as some traditional country standards.

Pretty good album.  It comes from the period of country music that I like the best.  Sometimes it is hard to remember what Nelson was like pre-seventies.dscn6183

For a sample, I am using a song which is one of my favorite standards, “Columbus Stockade”.  I first became aware of this song from Judy Henske’s album.  Anyway, this version is a wonderful jazz/bop version which is a bit strange for Nelson during this period of his music.  Anyway, it is pretty good.  I also threw in “Country Willie” for those looking for something more traditionally country.8750891-0

Satisfactory record.