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Old 02-03-2010, 09:59 AM   #61 (permalink)
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Hank Williams album "Beyond the Sunset" is my fav classic country albums of all time
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Old 02-10-2010, 08:11 AM   #62 (permalink)
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I have a hard time with Classic Country.... Because I can never figure out where the line is drawn to me its anything before Garth Brooks, but I figure it stops before the 80's or even early 90's I am not sure. Then on top of that I have a hard time with Albums because I always listened to country on the radio or the Jukebox, mostly on the Juke Box maybe a few greatest hits cassettes.

Ummm Anything David Allen Coe.... Big Coe Fan.

If I had to pick an album I guess Nothing Sacred but I pretty much love anything Coe.

I try to catch him every time when he comes through my city.... even though I hate the ****ty venue he plays.

Damn he looks rough... one of the weirdest acts I have seen considering a dude comes out and wipes the sweat off him every 5mins. Hes just getting real old I guess. but he still talks ****... He told a dude last time that he was gonna come down and whoop his ass, I dont know what it was over but Coe was Pissed.

I love the fact that I grew up to this..... My Uncle always played some Coe.



Presley can do some good Country as well.... I like Danny Okeefes Original is great and Waylon's I just picked Presley


Hank JR gets alot of Sh*t for doing the Monday Night Football but damn to me most of his work is Classic to me.


*EDIT DAMN I just realized this was in the Album Review section.. Sorry just never listened to albums to much.
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Old 05-02-2010, 05:14 PM   #63 (permalink)
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First time I've tried a longer review in quite a while this, so apologies in advance if it's a bit dry, boring or whatever. Anyway...

Bob Dylan
Nashville Skyline
1969


Girl From the North Country (w/ Johnny Cash)
Nashville Skyline Rag
To Be Alone With You
I Threw It All Away
Peggy Day
Lay Lady Lay
One More Night
Tell Me It Isn't True
Country Pie
Tonight I'll Be Staying Here With You


I might just be insane or something, but the experience of listening to the original versions of songs like Mr. Tambourine Man, Blowin' In the Wind, A Hard Rain's a-Gonna Fall and the Times They Are a-Changin' in their purest, grittiest and most well-loved forms was never really one that appealed to me. I can definitely where the appeal in Bob Dylan's earliest musical output lies and, hell, I do admire the fire those songs have in their bellies. It just plain ain't my thing. Maybe one day though. After all, there was once a time when I used to say that about all of Dylan's material, which was basically two or three years ago. My mind was officially changed about the man the first time a mate of mine played me the Hurricane - a song which brought about my fairly slow exploration of Dylan's back-catalogue. Without going into too much self-indulgent detail, about six months ago I found myself in possession of this here album.

This is an album which is not only, in my eyes at least, among Dylan's very finest but also (and relevantly to this thread) one of the landmark albums in the exposure of a then-fledgling school of musical expression called country rock. It was about a year too late in being released to be called the first country rock album, but it still counts as one more of the most important in its reaching a wider audience. If you want to know exactly how a couple of guys by the names of Gram Parsons and Chris Hillman actually kicked the whole idea into life, check out my sig link. That's where you'll find a nice, long review of the Byrds' Sweetheart Of the Rodeo - the album which officially brought country rock to the masses. Nashville Skyline here helped it along, being not only the album that found Dylan trying to distance himself from the media's 'spokesperson of the generation' tag, but also trying to fit in with the current country vibe, that being a move away from the rural folk music celebrated by the said Byrds album and towards mainstream pop.

Not to call this album country pop or anything (far from it actually), but there definitely is much more of a leaning towards melody on this album as well as traditional country music and, as with the best of album openers, the revision of Dylan's Girl From the North Country, with the help of his chum Johnny Cash, gives you the perfect taste of the kind of album that lies ahead - laid-back, friendly, melodic and beautifully memorable as well. Unfortunately, this gorgeous little number is the only one of an album's worth of Dylan-Cash duets recorded during the Nashville Skyline Sessions that's officially available. Judging by the below video for Big River, it sounds like we're missing out on something pretty damn cool.

Anyway, on to Nashville Skyline Rag, this lovely little instrumental setting the tone for the cute little lovesong To Be Alone With You that follows it in that they both boast lively guitar figures and steel guitar augmentations that firmly stick the more instantly-recognisable country rock tag on both of them. Definitely both a good couple of songs, but not quite on par with the marvellous opener. I Threw It All Away, though, not only manages that but also ascends it, being a thoroughly miserable tune that's reason enough to go through the fuss of getting this album alone. As you might expect from the man, the lyric is pure gold and brought to life by a terrific vocal performance and ghostly organ flourishes that underpin it. Side A is brought to a close by a much more obviously (at least to the uninitiated ear) country-flavoured song by the name of Peggy Day; another song that's simplistic yet memorable and lively enough in its delivery to really have an impact - such is one of the main strengths of this album.

One of the hits from the album, Lay Lady Lay, is another short, fairly simplistic little song with that kinda punch to it (although this time with a bizarre cowbell-bongo-drumkit percussive arrangement) and, like I Threw It All Away and Girl From the North Country, is another of the much more melodic and catchy moments on the album. As good as this album is on the whole, there are two absolute peaks to its impact for me. One of them I've already mentioned, the other is One More Night. Again, it's another very uptempo and catchy part of the album, but one which really uses the new-found croon in Dylan's voice to such a great effect, making it all the more memorable for me. Tell Me That It Isn't True keeps the torch burning as a slower cut that rolls in on the back of a superb acoustic and pedal steel guitar motif and is another wonderful slice of country rock. The playful, 100-odd second ditty Country Pie eases the album to its climax which comes in the shape of Tonight I'll Be Staying Here With You - another optimistic, mid-tempo lovesong of the kind that dominates this album and one that, like its bedfellows on the tracklisting, makes no effort to disguise its influences but also does well to expand into and take in pop melodies.

Such is the strength of this gorgeous little album, being one that combines the unmistakeable and totally unique vibe and essence of the country music tradition with catchy pop song structures and melodies, which at the end of the day gives us one of Dylan's most accessible albums. Don't take my word for it though - that's just how it comes across to me (ie some Brit who's going by only what he's read and heard) Whatever the case, this is definitely an album that belongs in any thread about classic country.





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Old 05-04-2010, 11:46 AM   #64 (permalink)
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I found that review anything but boring and dry Bulldog! Loved it, wonderful job, very descriptive. You may be surprised, but this album is one of the few Bob Dylan albums I haven't check out yet. I tend to be a Blowin' in the Wind, Times They are A-Changin, A Hard Rain's A Gonna Fall type of girl. I wasn't aware that Johnny Cash was included in this album until now. Definitely gotta check that out. I have a feeling Bob Dylan managed to fit into the sound pretty easily. I will look at those videos as soon as I get home. Great job Sir Bulldog, Master of Reviews. Looks stellar in the thread!
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Old 05-04-2010, 04:18 PM   #65 (permalink)
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I found that review anything but boring and dry Bulldog! Loved it, wonderful job, very descriptive. You may be surprised, but this album is one of the few Bob Dylan albums I haven't check out yet. I tend to be a Blowin' in the Wind, Times They are A-Changin, A Hard Rain's A Gonna Fall type of girl. I wasn't aware that Johnny Cash was included in this album until now. Definitely gotta check that out. I have a feeling Bob Dylan managed to fit into the sound pretty easily. I will look at those videos as soon as I get home. Great job Sir Bulldog, Master of Reviews. Looks stellar in the thread!
Oh garsh I tend to rant on quite a bit with longer reviews (hell, I do that in virtually every other post I make anyway!), so it's good to you thought it was readable. Nashville Skyline there is, as I say, definitely the most flat-out country album in Dylan's back-catalogue, so you should like that one. Can't remember if I said this in the review or not, but the album has a total running time of only about 30 minutes, so it's not exactly that demanding either. I'm sure you'll absolutely love the Dylan/Cash duet on the opening track too. I doubt you'll have much trouble finding the album but, if you do, you know who to call

One or two more of these are on the way from me by the way. I know whenever I say that in a thread it usually ends up taking weeks for me to get round to it, but I'll do my best to mull over at least one album here by the end of the week.
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Old 05-06-2010, 08:24 PM   #66 (permalink)
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wow you've all done a really great job with these reviews!

i love classic country so much and it's akin to some of my fondest family memories

i started working on a dolly parton one tonight but i doubt i'll get finished before tomorrow

but i plan on contributing here as time permits

awesome thread!
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Old 05-07-2010, 06:59 AM   #67 (permalink)
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wow you've all done a really great job with these reviews!

i love classic country so much and it's akin to some of my fondest family memories

i started working on a dolly parton one tonight but i doubt i'll get finished before tomorrow

but i plan on contributing here as time permits

awesome thread!
Funnily enough, I was only thinking about getting hold of some Dolly earlier his morning. Looking forward to reading your review if you manage to find the time for it

Welcome to the boards as well.
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Old 05-07-2010, 11:22 AM   #68 (permalink)
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Here are some more words and pictures for you to look at. I've got one more review for this thread lined up as well, so I'll probably get that in the can over the next week or so...

Emmylou Harris
Elite Hotel
1975


Amarillo [Harris/Crowell]
Together Again [Owens]
Feelin' Single, Seein' Double [Kemp]
Sin City [Parsons/Hillman]
One Of These Days [Montgomery]
'til I Gain Control Again [Crowell]
Here, There and Everywhere [Lennon/McCartney]
Ooh Las Vegas [Parsons/Grech]
Sweet Dreams [Gibson]
Jambalaya [Williams]
Satan's Jewel Crown [Eden]
Wheels [Parsons/Hillman]


As a lot of artists did back in the days of yore, 1975 was a year of furious recording and touring activity in a year that saw her release a couple of albums. The first of those was the widely acclaimed (and almost equally-awesome) Pieces Of the Sky and, evidently, Miss Harris' second studio adventure that year saw her come up with this album - one of the true country classics. The songstress who'd had a real hand in the making of some of the finest and most influential country rock albums of all time (again, have a look at the link in my signature) with a certain Gram Parsons really started to come into her own as a performer here, as you may be able to tell from her eclectic choice of old-timers to cover (from the Flying Burrito Brothers and Don Gibson to the Beatles and Buck Owens). At this early stage in her professional career, Harris wasn't the renowned songwriter she is today, but one who'd made a name for herself if not through her association with the fantabulous Gram Parsons then as one of the best cover artists out there too.

Given who she'd been working with, it should come as no surprise that this is an album with the country rock stamp (rather than the more rural, traditional sound) stamped all over it, starting with a song that any lucky owners of the Old Grey Whistle Test DVD would recognise - Amarillo. This uplifting, lively knees-up of a country rocker keeps up the theme of Harris' early albums opening with a real punch and as such is another one of her finest songs. Coming right after that is the torch-lighting Buck Owens ballad Together Again. It's not exactly a masterpiece and as such isn't really what I'd call an album highlight but, having said that, it does its job as a slower, more tender and emotional moment on the album. Along with the more playful Feelin' Single, Seein' Double, it's not really something I'd give the uninitiated to listen to. Like a lot of songs on this album, it's a lot more in the acquired taste court than a few of the albums I've mentioned here already.

A mixed bag on an opening salvo by the standards of the non-country-savvy but, coming right up after them are four reasons I reckon this album more than deserves the praise it gets. Beginning with the slower, beautiful reading of the Flying Burrito Brothers classic Sin City, the album ascends to a higher level of quality altogether. Such a highlight is complimented nicely by its being followed by the mesmerising One Of These Days - a song that's definitely among the most gorgeous country tunes, and one that has most of everything I love about the unique vibe of country music hidden within it. The live version in the video below doesn't quite capture the full glory of its studio version, but it'll do eh. Overall though, the album's started to take us down a slower, more contemplative kinda avenue and, as per norm, Emmylou's voice sounds nothing short of beautiful in the following 'til I Gain Control Again, keeping up the soothingly gentle vibe of the two songs before it and serving as another high-point of the album. Standing as yet another one of those reasons I feel this album is as successful as it is in its own right, Harris does another brilliant job with her next choice of a tune to cover, this one being the Beatles' Here, There and Everywhere, with her voice doing so much to both compliment a classic and give it a new edge entirely (as the very best of cover versions do).

Not to play down its quality at all, as it is a very fine number, but the Gram Parons number Ooh Las Vegas doesn't quite live up to the level of quality that'd been set up by the songs before it. Still a very fine, much more uptempo number by all accounts though. Again, a livelier moment in the tracklisting is followed by another ballad, this one being Sweet Dreams - a song written by Don Gibson and one that'd been made famous by a certain Patsy Cline, and would be even more so by the one and only Elvis Costello some six years later. True to its being a Hank Williams song alone, Jambalaya is another superb, more uplifting and catchy little number, this one featuring a wonderful piano solo at its mid-way point, not to mention the vocal harmonies with Rodney Crowell that do this album so much good. Yet another ballad follows that kinda song in the form of Satan's Jewel Crown which, yet again, shows off Harris' talent for really elevating the slower songwriting form with her beautiful voice. Putting the lid on the album is another absolute highlight, this being a frankly brilliant re-reading of one of my very favourite Flying Burrito Brothers songs, this one going by the name of Wheels. While I'll admit it doesn't quite stand up to one of the best vocal duos in music history (the Gram Parsons/Chris Hillman one), Emmylou Harris and Jon Edwards still do this magnificent song justice in a faithful re-reading. The video I've found of it has Harris holding up part of an almost-as-good vocal harmony with a certain Elvis Costello, and should give you some idea of what kinda song this is in case you didn't already know.

Basically, there are five reasons you should get this album if you don't already have it. Those are 1) Sin City, 2) One Of These Days, 3) 'til I Gain Control Again, 4) Here, There and Everywhere and 5) Wheels. Saying that, this probably isn't an album someone with no experience of country music should get, as it's maybe a bit much for the uninitiated. It's probably best you work your way towards it by getting Elvis Costello's Almost Blue, Ringo Starr's Beaucoups Of Blues, the Flying Burrito Brothers the Gilded Palace Of Sin and/or the Byrds' Sweetheart Of the Rodeo first. Just know that this album is one of my favourites of all time, and I eat bacon and eggs for breakfast, bangers and mash for dinner and fish 'n' chips for supper everyday, so it can't be that bad eh





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Old 05-08-2010, 03:36 PM   #69 (permalink)
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Oh I'm so happy you reviewed this album! I've really been wanting to expand my collection of Emmylou and I've been told quite a few times that this a good album of hers. She and Willie Nelson were big pals and I recognize a few of those songs as ones he's performed too. I have to agree with you that she is pretty hit and miss. She'll either blow you away, or leave something to be desired it seems. Love her style though. I'm not one who falls inlove with female country & western singers but she's one of my exceptions. Patsy Cline too, and I'll soon review an album of hers, but I've yet to get my hands on the one I've been recommended.
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Old 05-08-2010, 03:49 PM   #70 (permalink)
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Oh I'm so happy you reviewed this album! I've really been wanting to expand my collection of Emmylou and I've been told quite a few times that this a good album of hers. She and Willie Nelson were big pals and I recognize a few of those songs as ones he's performed too. I have to agree with you that she is pretty hit and miss. She'll either blow you away, or leave something to be desired it seems. Love her style though. I'm not one who falls inlove with female country & western singers but she's one of my exceptions. Patsy Cline too, and I'll soon review an album of hers, but I've yet to get my hands on the one I've been recommended.
Yeah, this one's definitely a classy slice of music and no mistake. Pieces Of the Sky and Luxury Liner, as far as her 70s output goes, are two very good albums as well. One of the reasons Emmylou's my favourite country lady (for want of a better phrase) is because she actually took a very convincing change in direction into a more alternative rock territory in her later years, and came up with another two of my favourite ever albums for it. Elite Hotel here has One Of These Days and Wheels on it though, which is reason enough to make it my favourite album of hers bar none.

I'll fess up and say I'm not really so keen on classic country's female singer-songwriters either, but that said I still haven't really explored the genre properly yet. I'm a fan of Lucinda Williams and Gillian Welch as well, but they're a bit too modern for this thread really. I'll be looking forward to your Patsy Cline review as well whenever you can manage it - someone I've beewanting to check out for quite a while now. Plus, Elvis Costello's a fan of hers, so she must be good eh
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