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Archive for the ‘David Allan Coe’ Category

An Outlaw Looks At 75: Legacy Goes Digital With David Allan Coe’s Columbia Collection

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David Allan Coe - Longhaired Redneck

This week, David Allan Coe turns 75.  Over those three-quarters of a century, Coe has given a face to outlaw country, raising rabble and raising hell even as he recorded some of the most enduring albums of the genre.  In celebration of the perennial rebel’s landmark birthday, Legacy Recordings is making 20 of his classic albums (and over 200 songs), originally released between 1974 and 1989, to digital service providers including Amazon MP3, iTunes and Spotify.  The digital initiative launches today with five titles released between 1974 and 1977 (The Mysterious Rhinestone Cowboy, Once Upon a Rhyme, Longhaired Redneck, Rides Again and Tattoo) and continues weekly through September 23, totaling four batches of five albums.

Legacy’s online collection from the vaults of Columbia Records spans the period between 1974’s major label debut The Mysterious Rhinestone Cowboy (so named for Coe’s outrageous onstage get-up) and 1989’s Crazy Daddy and includes such signature songs as “Would You Lay with Me (In a Field of Stone),” “Take This Job and Shove It,” “Mona Lisa Lost Her Smile” and “She Used to Love Me a Lot.”

The controversial, anti-establishment country hero’s body of work remains one of the most exciting and most daring in the country oeuvre, and this one-stop (digital) shopping just might provide a welcome entrée to a daunting, large discography.

After the jump, you can raise a little hell by perusing the complete release schedule to mark David Allan Coe’s 75th! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

September 2, 2014 at 10:01

The Mysterious Rhinestone Cowboy Returns: Raven Collects David Allan Coe Albums

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Mysterious David Allan CoeIf “outlaw country” has a face, it’s likely that of David Allan Coe. Though many have been associated with the rabble-rousing, convention-defying, honky tonk-embracing genre, including Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, Waylon Jennings and Merle Haggard, Coe has been a perennial “bad boy” since bursting onto the music scene in the late 1960s fresh out of prison. In fact, many attribute the term “outlaw country” itself to Coe, who was a member of the Outlaws Motorcycle Club and certainly lived his life on the edge. (Waylon Jennings could also stake a claim to the phrase, having recorded Lee Clayton’s song “Ladies Love Outlaws” in 1972 and furthering the notion of country singers bucking the slick, sweetened Nashville Sound trend in favor of rootsy, raw, and rough-and-tumble music.) Australia’s Raven Records label has collected eight of Coe’s earliest major-label albums, all released on Columbia Records between 1974 and 1979, on two 2-CD sets containing four albums apiece.

The Mysterious David Allan Coe brings together Coe’s first four long-players for Columbia: The Mysterious Rhinestone Cowboy (1974), Once Upon a Rhyme (1975), Longhaired Redneck (1976) and Rides Again (1977). The title of his Columbia debut was derived from his outrageous, masked onstage get-up, and predated Glen Campbell’s 1975 pop hit “Rhinestone Cowboy.” On the set produced by Ron Bledsoe (a Nashville vet with credits ranging from Vikki Carr to Ray Price), Coe featured his own songs alongside traditionals and those composed by Mickey Newbury, Guy Clark and others.   Heavily inspired by the back-to-basics approach of Merle Haggard and his Bakersfield, CA kin, Coe took an artistic leap forward with his sophomore LP, Once Upon a Rhyme. The album featured his own version of his song “Would You Lie with Me (In a Field of Stone)” which Tanya Tucker had already taken to No.1 Country. It kicked off Side One’s set of Coe originals; the second side was ceded to covers from sources both likely (Texan singer-songwriter Richard Dobson) and unlikely (Tom Jans and pop hitmaker Jeff Barry). But the album’s most enduring track was its closer. “You Never Even Called Me By My Name” was purloined from an album by Steve Goodman, who originally co-wrote it with another folk hero, John Prine. But Coe inserted himself into the satirical final verse with a delicious, country-spoofing twist. He was rewarded with his first Top 10 C&W single; the LP also placed among the Top 10 C&W Albums.

The title song to 1976’s Longhaired Redneck made the C&W Top 20. Written by Coe with Jimmy Rabbitt, it featured him making direct reference to the outlaw movement of which he was now a major part, as well as paying homage to Haggard, Ernest Tubb and “Whisperin’” Bill Anderson. The prolific artist followed Redneck, on which he wrote or co-wrote every track, the next year with Rides Again. Its opening track and single, “Willie, Waylon and Me,” again found Coe addressing the company he was keeping. He also name-checked country-rockers The Byrds, The Flying Burrito Brothers and The Eagles as well as The Beatles, The Rolling Stones and Janis Joplin in the No. 25-charting single. On Rides Again, his songwriting also took precedence, and he had a credit on every track except for the cover of Donnie Murphy’s “Laid Back and Wasted.”

Raven’s collection features new liner notes from Keith Glass and remastering from Warren Barnett. It adds five bonus tracks: the non-LP sides “(If I Could Climb) The Walls of the Bottle” and “Please Come to Boston” as well as two songs from 1977’s Tattoo and two more from 1978’s Family Album including “Take This Job and Shove It” which became a smash hit for Johnny Paycheck. However, those albums can be heard in full on Raven’s next collection.  Hit the jump for much more! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

June 26, 2014 at 14:18

Reviews: Eddy Arnold, “Complete No. 1 Hits” and David Allan Coe, “Texas Moon”

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Eddy Arnold Complete Original #1 HitsWhen 1965’s “Make the World Go Away” entered the Pop Top 10, it was unusual, even for those heady days of pop diversity.  The singer, Eddy Arnold, had first signed to RCA Victor in 1943.  The Musicians’ Union’s strike prohibited the young vocalist from recording until it was settled in December, 1944, but when Arnold finally entered WSM’s radio studios to record four songs, he was making history.  His session was the first for a major label to be held in Nashville, Tennessee.  His star was soon on the ascendant.  1946’s honky-tonkin’, fiddle-adorned “What is Life Without Love” was but his first No. 1 on the Billboard country chart.  In the period of 1947-1948, Arnold held the top spot for 60 consecutive weeks (!) and in 1947-1949, he remained there for 79 out of 112 weeks (!!).  In all, it wasn’t a bad career for the sharecropper’s son from Tennessee.  Despite this great success, it hasn’t been an easy task tracking down Arnold’s original RCA recordings, as he revisited his classic catalogue later in his career for re-recordings – frequently with overdubbed strings and additional instrumentation.  Real Gone Music has remedied the situation with Complete Original No. 1 Hits (RGM-0081), containing all 28 of Arnold’s original Country chart-toppers out of 147 chart hits.

The Tennessee Plowboy was the first country star to have his own television program and led the charge to make country mainstream; 37 hits in all also made the pop chart.  The earliest recordings on this compilation reveal a smooth, direct and often romantic tenor voice, which by the 1960s had transformed into a burnished baritone.  Young Elvis Presley cited Arnold as an influence, and in another connection, “Colonel” Tom Parker was Arnold’s manager until 1953.

Though heartbreak naturally plays a role in many of the songs on Complete Original No. 1 Hits, Arnold’s genial presence was indebted to the tradition of singing cowboys like Gene Autry.  He also was a disciple of Bing Crosby, and one can hear Crosby’s easygoing charm, and intimacy, in Arnold’s recordings.  (Crosby recorded his share of country-style songs, too!)  Some compared Arnold to Perry Como, and both singers indeed boasted a similarly laconic delivery.  The compilation covers the period of 1946-1968, but 1955-1965 was a fallow period for Arnold, with no songs reaching the coveted top spot.

The very first song here, “What is Life Without Love,” is one of eight tracks co-written by Arnold, who was no slouch in the songwriting department.  But he also had good taste in recording the songs of others.  Bob Hilliard, who also collaborated with Burt Bacharach and co-wrote the score to Walt Disney’s Peter Pan, wrote lyrics to Steve Nelson’s melody for “Bouquet of Roses,” one of the many Arnold songs with a marked pop leaning.   “A Heart Full of Love (For a Handful of Kisses),” by Nelson, Ray Soehnel and Arnold, is another one of the many pure pop lyrics here.  Much of the country comes from the arrangements, usually adorned with fiddle and the distinctive steel guitar of “Little” Roy Wiggins.  There’s a yodel in Arnold’s voice on songs like “One Kiss Too Many” and Cindy Walker’s “Take Me in Your Arms and Hold Me,” again playing the role of the heartsick, lovelorn hero.  The Ed Nelson/Steve Nelson/Arnold songwriting partnership yielded the even more maudlin “I’m Throwing Rice (At the Girl I Love)” (“After she just said ‘I do’”).

Hit the jump for more on Arnold, plus David Allan Coe’s Texas Moon! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

June 18, 2013 at 10:57

Release Round-Up: Week of April 30

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Shalamar Friends 2CD

Shalamar, Friends: Deluxe Edition / The Isley Brothers, Winner Takes All: Expanded Edition / Bootsy Collins Presents Sweat Band: Expanded Edition / The Gap Band, Gap Band VII: Expanded Edition / Billy Paul, Lately: Expanded Edition (Big Break)

The Big Break titles we covered yesterday include a double-disc expansion of one of Shalamar’s most enduring LPs, plus Isleys, P-Funk and albums from Total Experience Records. Full coverage/pre-order links here!

David Allan Coe

Blue Oyster Cult, Imaginos / Sea Level, Cats on the Coast/On the Edge Wilderness Road, Sold for the Prevention of Disease Only / David Allan Coe, Texas Moon / Eddy Arnold, Complete Original #1 Hits / Johnny Lytle, The Soulful Rebel/People & Love / Allspice, Allspice / Larry Williams, That Larry Williams (Real Gone Music)

Read all about Real Gone’s latest here.

Essential Mott

Midnight Oil, Essential Oils / Indigo Girls, Jerry Lee Lewis, Mott the Hoople, Harry Nilsson, Pete Seeger, Andy Williams, Johnny Winter, The Essential (Legacy)

Two-disc Essential sets for a bunch of artists! Unreleased tracks can be enjoyed on the Andy Williams and Nilsson sets, and the others are solid overviews.  Joe reviews ’em here!

Indigo Girls: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.
Jerry Lee Lewis: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.
Midnight Oil: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.
Mott: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.
Nilsson: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.
Seeger: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.
Andy Williams: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.
Johnny Winter: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.

History of Eagles

Eagles, History of the Eagles (Jigsaw)

The new two-part documentary on the legendary rock band, coupled with an unreleased concert from 1977.

DVD: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.
Blu-ray: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.
Super Deluxe Blu-Ray: Amazon U.S.

Tubes - Remote Control

The Tubes, Remote Control: Expanded Edition (Iconoclassic)

Four unreleased tracks complement this new version of the band’s final A&M album, a classic concept album produced by Todd Rundgren. (Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.)

Ambrosia - Life Beyond LA

Ambrosia, Life Beyond L.A.: Deluxe Edition (Friday Music)

Led by David Pack, this smooth album spun off the hit “How Much I Feel”; here, it’s expanded with an unreleased bonus live set. (Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.)

Phyllis Hyman - Somewhere

G.C. Cameron, Love Songs and Other Tragedies: Expanded Edition / Phyllis Hyman, Somewhere in My Lifetime: Expanded Edition / Meli’sa Morgan, Good Love: Expanded Edition / Nancy Wilson, Music on My Mind / Life, Love and Harmony (SoulMusic Records) (Order all titles here from Amazon U.K.)

Here’s the latest batch from Cherry Red’s SoulMusic Records label!  Read Joe’s review of Somewhere in My Lifetime here!

James Taylor - JT Paper Sleeve

West, Bruce and Laing, Whatever Turns You On / West, Bruce and Laing, Live ‘n’ Kickin’ / Walter Egan, Fundamental Roll/Not Shy / James Taylor, JT/Flag/Dad Loves His Work (Culture Factory)

The latest in mini-LP replica remasters from Culture Factory.