Alongside fellow Buckaroos, Don Rich, Doyle Holly and Willie Cantu, steel guitar ace Tom Brumley was a core part of Buck Owensâ€™ â€œBakersfield Sound.â€ Brumley first connected with Owens as a studio musician at Capitol in the early â€˜60s, and joined the Buckaroos in 1963. He stayed with Owensâ€™ throughout the groupâ€™s phenomenal commercial run in the 1960s, departing in 1969 to join Ricky Nelsonâ€™s Stone Canyon Band (thatâ€™s him on â€œGarden Partyâ€). So successful were the Buckaroos in backing Owens that they developed a parallel recording career of their own, and the sides collected here – all instrumentals except the closer – are drawn from both Buck Owens albums, and those recorded separately by the Buckaroos. Brumleyâ€™s steel guitar shines on these instrumentals, but as the closing Buck Owens track â€œTogether Againâ€ shows, his instrumental support and solos with a megawatt star fronting the band resonated on a whole other level. This collection offers fans a generous helping of Brumleyâ€™s talent and style, including languorous ballads and hot-picked barn burners, and provides a nice complement to his work on Owensâ€™ iconic hits. [Â©2019 Hyperbolium]
After a pair of double-disc sets covering Owensâ€™ trailblazing, chart topping singles of 1957-1966 and 1967-1970, Omnivore closes out the Bakersfield legendâ€™s run on Capitol with this superb third volume. Owensâ€™ early â€˜70s singles didnâ€™t repeat the commercial dominance of his 1960s output, but several still landed in the upper reaches of the charts (and at #1 with Bob and Faye Morrisâ€™ â€œMade in Japanâ€), and demonstrated continued creativity. The early â€˜70s were a time of artistic exploration for Owens as he recorded in his then-newly built Bakersfield studio, produced himself, covered material from outside the country realm, and stretched out from his classic Telecaster-and-steel sound to incorporate pop, bluegrass and gospel. As this set attests, his declining chart fortunes were more a product of changing public tastes and industry trends than a slip in artistry.
Owens opened 1971 with a moving cover of â€œBridge Over Troubled Water,â€ featuring a solemn vocal, acoustic guitar and atmospheric backing harmonies that take the song to a different emotional place than Simon & Garfunkelâ€™s original. He showed off his omnivorous musical appetite and sense of humor with a southern-funk take on Jimmy Driftwoodâ€™s â€œBattle of New Orleansâ€ a transformation of Shel Silversteinâ€™s â€œThe Cover of the Rolling Stoneâ€ into the country-styled â€œOn the Cover of the Music City News,â€ a loping bluegrass arrangement of Cousin Emmyâ€™s â€œRuby, Are You Mad at Your Manâ€ and an energetic version of the traditional â€œRollinâ€™ in My Sweet Babyâ€™s Arms.â€ The latter two expanded the Buckaroosâ€™ musical palette with the addition of Ronnie Jacksonâ€™s banjo.
The biggest hits in this five year span came from the pens of others, but Owens continued to write fresh material for himself. He cracked the Top 10 with â€œGreat Expectations,â€ and the novelties â€œBig Game Hunterâ€ andÂ â€œ(Itâ€™s A) Monsterâ€™s Holiday,â€ and further down the chart he scored with the defeated â€œIn the Palm of Your Hand,â€ the discontented â€œArms Full of Empty,â€ the defiant â€œYou Ainâ€™t Gonna Have Olâ€™ Buck to Kick Around No Moreâ€ and the happy-go-lucky â€œAinâ€™t It Amazing, Gracie.â€ Owens clearly had fuel left in his songwriting tank, even if country radio and the listening public werenâ€™t paying as close attention as they had the previous decade.
Owensâ€™ songwriting prowess can also be heard in B-sides that include the Mexicali-tinged waltz â€œBlack Texas Dirtâ€ and the steel and fiddle heartbreak of â€œI Love You So Much It Hurts.â€ He picked up excellent material from Terry Clements, John English, Dennis Knutson, Robert John Jones and Buckaroos Jim Shaw, including â€œ(Iâ€™m Goinâ€™) Home,â€ â€œ41st Street Lonely Hearts Club,â€ and his last Capitol single, â€œCountry Singerâ€™s Prayer.â€ With the 1974 death of Don Rich having deeply dented his enthusiasm for music making, his waning commercial success led him to a mutual parting of the ways with Capitol (who shelved his last album in the process). He signed with Warner Brothers for a pair of albums that garnered middling chart success before he slipped into a hiatus that lasted much of the 1980s.
Omnivoreâ€™s double disc set includes the Aâ€™s and Bâ€™s of all 21 singles that Owens released on Capitol from 1971 to 1975, both with the Buckaroos, and in duets with his son Buddy and his protege Susan Raye. The latter includes charting covers of the Brownsâ€™ â€œLooking Back to Seeâ€ (with a twangy steel solo from Ralph Mooney) and Mickey & Sylviaâ€™s â€œLove is Strange,â€ and a re-recording of â€œThe Good Old Days (Are Here Again),â€ a song that Owens had released as a Buckaroos-backed B-side just two months earlier. The 16-page booklet includes liner notes by Scott Bomar, photos, picture sleeve reproductions, and detailed release, chart and personnel data. This is a worthy capstone to Owensâ€™ monumental career at Capitol, and an essential volume for fans of his music. [Â©2019 Hyperbolium]
The laying on of spiritual hands offered up on 2016â€™s Blue Healer is now turned inward, with a dramatic album that finds Mathus moving from guitar to piano, and enriching his musical brew with space. Space for the vocals and lyrics, and space for instrumental backings that arenâ€™t exactly spare, but often stray from the thick gumbo of his earlier albums. He ranges easily and authoritatively through Americana, folk, country, R&B, rock and electric swamp, turning his lyrics inward to explore the underpinnings of his own artistic life. The songs often drift into being, as though Mathus is gathering his thoughts as he addresses the microphone; heâ€™s relaxed, confident and intensely present as he reveals himself. Thereâ€™s an immediacy in this approach that casts a new light on his earlier records, suggesting they may have been more of an outward manifestation of the internal truths he mines here.
Some of these personal revelations are delivered directly in the lyrics, but elsewhere, such as the title track, poetic images are rendered with expressive singing and backed by instrumentals that essay mood rather than narrative. The basic revelation of â€œReally Hurt Someoneâ€ is heightened by intense violin runs and vocal dynamics that suggest Screaminâ€™ Jay Hawkinsâ€™ â€œI Put a Spell on You.â€ The drifting piano and backing chorale of â€œBeen Unravellingâ€ add a meditative counterpoint to a palpably lonely vocal – as if Joe Cocker was fronting the Friends-era Beach Boys. Mathus turns to an R&B groove for â€œSunk a Little Loa,â€ swampy electric blues for â€œAlligator Fish,â€ trad-jazz for the story song â€œJack Told the Devil,â€ boozy C&W on â€œSouth of Laredo,â€ and tips his melodic hat to Jimi Hendrixâ€™s â€œAngelâ€ on â€œSunken Road.â€
The albumâ€™s lyric sheet reveals how Mathus reduced his words to increase focus. The songs are typically three or four minutes in length, but with lyrics that may be only ten or twelve short lines. Instead of traditional verse/chorus, he lets emptiness have its say, highlighting whatâ€™s said by not saying too much. â€œNever Know Till Itâ€™s Goneâ€ lays out its lament in eight lines, surrenders its sorrow and longing to an instrumental interlude, and repeats itself for good measure, and the closing cover of A.P. Carterâ€™s â€œGive Me the Roses,â€ offers an insight illuminated so clearly as to belie its intellectual depth. The latter is emblematic of the albumâ€™s offer of deep, almost subconscious thoughts brought to the surface to be mulled over in the explicit light of day. This is a powerful new approach for Mathus, one that his fans will find both emotionally and intellectually captivating. [Â©2019 Hyperbolium]
The old saw about having a lifetime to make your debut and twelve months to make the follow-up is a luxury that the Delines didnâ€™t get to enjoy. Not because they were rushed back into the studio by a demanding record label, or suffered a lack of creative energy and desire to write and record a sophomore album. Instead, after touring their 2014 debut, Colfax, recording a summer single that organically blossomed into the extended EP, Scenic Sessions, and completing substantial work on their planned sophomore album, the bandâ€™s singer, Amy Boone (Damnations, TX) was struck by a car and sidelined by two broken legs. Now, multiple surgeries and three years after the interruption, theyâ€™ve completed an album whose deep, emotional atmosphere appears to have been infused by the collective doubt, hope, expectation and recovery that marked the waiting.
The albumâ€™s downbeat country soul bridges the 200 miles between Memphis and Nashville, with organ, horns and pedal steel each offering notes of solemnity and sadness. The spotlight, however, belongs to Booneâ€™s intimate readings of Willy Vlautinâ€™s extraordinary songs. Vlautin captures human moments whose revelations are often to be found deep inside a subtle emotion, thought or interaction. Boone renders these words with a quiet strength that is both introspective and outwardly aware of their profundity. Vlautinâ€™s protagonists spin in downward spirals that might be infinite, if not for an encouraging whisper. The magnitude of emotional despair is shown in nearly imperceptible contrast with earlier times that were, if not exactly happy, less of a disaster.
Vlautinâ€™s talent as a novelist is on display as his songs account for meter, verse, chorus and rhyme without being constrained by them. His stories unfold in both blink-of-the-eye details and jump-cut narratives. Vlautinâ€™s world is a bleak place in which the naive abandon of â€œEddie and Pollyâ€ metastasizes into addiction, destitution and disintegration, and the unrelenting bad breaks of â€œHolly the Hustleâ€ beg for redemption that never comes. The plea of â€œRoll Back My Lifeâ€ offers a flicker of perception, as does the admission of â€œHe Donâ€™t Burn for Me,â€ but in both cases, itâ€™s unclear if recognition will lead to understanding, or if awareness will lead to action. Boone infuses the characters with quiet grit and soul, and the the bandâ€™s moody, often sparse backings drape her in atmosphere. Three years in the making, and well worth the wait. [Â©2019 Hyperbolium]
Born in Texas, and raised in Arkansas, William Orville â€œLeftyâ€ Frizzell took in the seminal influences of Jimmie Rodgers, Ernest Tubb and others, and forged an original vocal style that impacted an entire generation of singers. His next-generation disciples included Merle Haggard, Willie Nelson, George Jones and Roy Orbison, and his influence continues to reverberate today through the works of Brennen Leigh and many others. His 1950 debut topped the charts with both â€œIf You’ve Got the Money (I’ve Got the Time)â€ and its flip, â€œI Love You a Thousand Ways,â€ and the hits that followed stretched into early 1953. But Frizzell was a mercurial artist, firing his manager and band in 1952, joining and quitting the Grand Ole Opry, and moving to Los Angeles, where he joined the Town Hall Party. His 1954 single “I Love You Mostly” would be his last Top 20 hit for four years, and though heâ€™d move to Nashville and regain the top slot with 1964â€™s â€œSaginaw Michigan,â€ his health and success steadily declined until his death at the age of 47 in 1975.
Bear Family has pulled out all the stops to honor Frizzellâ€™s legendary career, gathering 361 tracks on 20 CDs, including all of his singles (45s and 78s) and albums, demos and session material, and a wealth of newly discovered material. The discs are packaged in double digipaks, which are themselves housed in a 12-Â½â€ x 12-Â½â€ x 3â€ box that includes a massive 264-page hardcover book. This box set represents the third iteration of Bear Familyâ€™s archival work on Frizzell, having previously issued the 14-LP set His Life, His Music in 1984, and the updated 12-CD set Lifeâ€™s Like Poetry in 1992. This is a superset of both earlier releases, and though a few scraps might still be hiding in a dusty vault, this is likely to be the definitive statement on Frizzellâ€™s recording career. In addition to complete coverage of his 25-years of commercial releases, the demos, private recordings, radio airchecks and U.S. military program transcriptions stretch back into the 1940s. The setâ€™s final eight discs feature Frizzellâ€™s younger brother David reading his biography I Love You a Thousand Ways.
Discs 1 through 9 repeat the same commercial material as was originally offered on Lifeâ€™s Like Poetry. Discs 10-12 include demos, radio airchecks and transcriptions that provide a rich picture of the artist in development. These latter recordings vary in quality, and some of the earliest material is rough in spots, but Frizzellâ€™s voice always manages to emerge from the surface noise of acetates and metal parts. New to this box are two dozen full and partial demos and non-session recordings, including late-40s covers of Ernest Tubb (â€œIâ€™ll Always Be Glad to Take You Backâ€ and â€œIâ€™ll Always Be Glad to Take You Backâ€), Jimmie Rodgers (â€œMy Old Pal of Yesterday,â€ â€œJimmie the Kidâ€ and â€œCalifornia Bluesâ€), Ernest Tubb (â€œMean Mama Bluesâ€), Hank Williams (â€œIâ€™m a Long Gone Daddy,â€ â€œLast Night I Heard You Crying in Your Sleepâ€ and â€œThereâ€™ll Be No Teardrops Tonightâ€), and 1950 band recordings of Frizzell originals â€œIf You’re Ever Lonely Darling,â€ â€œI Love You A Thousand Waysâ€ and â€œLost Love Blues.â€ Of particular interest among the new tracks are three solo acoustic takes of â€œI Wonâ€™t Be Good For Nothinâ€™â€ that show how Frizzell developed his approach to the song.
The transfers and mastering of the studio material highlight the microphoneâ€™s love for Frizzellâ€™s voice. His presence is palpable sixty years after he first stood and sang these numbers, and his feel for a songâ€™s tempo remains unerring, never rushing a lyric, but never dragging the beat. As described by Merle Haggard, Frizzell would â€œhold on to each word until he finally decided to drop it and pick up the next one.â€ Charles Wolfeâ€™s biographical essay, updated and revised by Daniel Cooper and Kevin Coffey, pieces together Frizzellâ€™s personal and recording history from a variety of sources. Frizzell was apparently not fond of being interviewed, and the authors augment the artistâ€™s own memories with those of his family, friends, supporting musicians and colleagues. The book (weighing in at a somewhat unwieldy five pounds) is laced with archival photos, and supplemented by Richard Weize and Kevin Coffeyâ€™s detailed discography. This collection is the epitome of the Bear Family box set, overwhelming in its completeness, attention to detail and love for the artist. [Â©2018 Hyperbolium]
This West Virginia trio – singer/songwriter John Lilly, guitarist Robert Shafer and acoustic bassist Will Carter – make country music from another era. There are Western tones that suggest the Sons of the Pioneers, but Lilly and Carterâ€™s harmonies are bluegrass brotherly, and Shaferâ€™s picking ranges through swing, rockabilly, bluegrass and folk. Add in the playing of guests Russ Hicks on steel guitar and Tony Creasman on drums, and the group covers a lot of range with their original material. The album opens with Lilly on the side of the road, thumb out and wanderlust intact. His travel turns emotional, as he contemplates the scars that have toughened him and the memories that bind him steadfastly to the past. â€œRough and Ready Heartâ€ suggests heâ€™s ready to soldier on, but his attachment to the past puts tomorrow on hold for â€œLost in Yesterday.â€ Itâ€™s not until â€œEmerald Eyesâ€ that Lilly finds his way back to the present, and with the clever barroom lesson of â€œYou Canâ€™t Get There From Hereâ€ he spies the exit. The album closes with the upbeat rockabilly â€œGreen Light,â€ the rhythm section stoking the beat as Shafer shows off his flatpicking prowess. Sharp songwriting and instrumental virtuosity has made Blue Yonder a weekly favorite at the Bluegrass Kitchen, and their latest album brings it home. [Â©2018 Hyperbolium]
You may have never heard country-soul singer-songwriter Jim Ford, but youâ€™ve likely heard his songs, and youâ€™ve certainly heard his fans. Ford co-wrote P.J. Probyâ€™s hit single â€œNiki Hoeky,â€ an album for the Temptations, and songs recorded by Bobby Womack, Aretha Franklin, Bobbie Gentry, Dave Edmunds and Nick Lowe. The latter named Ford as his biggest musical influence, and recorded Fordâ€™s songs with his pub rock group Brinsley Schwarz and as a solo act. This 1969 debut was the only full-length release of Fordâ€™s lifetime, which also included singles, unreleased albums for Capitol and Paramount, and a wealth of session tracks that slowly found their way out of the tape vault.
Recorded in Los Angeles with support from James Burton, Dr. John, Jim Keltner and Pat and Lolly Vegas, Ford laid down an unusual mix of funk, soul, country and swamp pop. Burtonâ€™s guitar figures combine with soulful backing vocals, horns and strings, to create an album that sounds as if it could have just as easily been recorded in Memphis as in Southern California. The title track looks back at the poverty and back breaking work from which Ford ran away as a teenager. The songâ€™s breakdowns into hymn contrast with full throated pleas for relief, as Ford recounts the sort of living that wears a man down by his early twenties. His early years inform his recording of Delaney & Bonnieâ€™s â€œLong Road Ahead,â€ and his move from New Orleans to California is essayed in the autobiographical â€œWorking My Way To LA.â€
Oddly, for an album by a songwriter, half the selections are covers, including Stevie Wonderâ€™s â€œI Wanna Make Her Love Me,â€ a swamp-boogie take on Willie Dixonâ€™s â€œSpoonful,â€ and a vocally strained rendition of Alex Harveyâ€™s â€œTo Make My Life Beautiful.â€ Fordâ€™s originals include the broken hearted road metaphors of â€œUnder Construction,â€ the emotionally satisfied â€œLove on My Brainâ€ and the not-too-subtle drug references of â€œDr. Handyâ€™s Dandy Candy.â€ None of this made an impression on radio programmers or record buyers, and the album quickly disappeared. Ford eventually made his way to England where sessions with Brinsley Schwarz and the Grease Band failed to generate releases, and additional masters recorded for Paramount were shelved.
Ford drifted into partying and out of the music industry, eventually ending up in Northern Californiaâ€™s Mendocino County, where he passed away in 2007. Bill Dahlâ€™s liner notes tell the story of Fordâ€™s career leading up to, through and following this album, and the booklet reproduces the albumâ€™s front and back cover art. The original ten tracks have been reissued several times on vinyl and CD, including a 2014 release by Varese, and an expanded 2013 edition by Bear Family. Additional volumes [1 2 3 4] of previously unreleased material have also been issued, but if youâ€™re new to Ford as a performer, this 1969 debut is the place to start. [Â©2018 Hyperbolium]
Don Richâ€™s death in a 1974 motorcycle accident had a well-documented impact on Buck Owens. With his musical drive in neutral, his chart success declining and his Capitol contract expiring, Owens departed his longtime label, recorded a pair of albums for Warner Brothers and faded into a musical hiatus. Lost in the shuffle was this final album Owens recorded in 1975 for Capitol at his Bakersfield studio. Two singles – â€œThe Battle of New Orleansâ€ and â€œCountry Singer’s Prayerâ€ – were released to little chart action, and anthologized on the album that turned out to be Owensâ€™ last Capitol release, The Best of Buck Owens, Vol. 6. The remaining tracks, shelved for more than forty years, are released here in their original running order, from the master tapes, for the first time. Both singles and their B-sides are included alongside liner notes by Scott B. Bomar and new interviews with Buckaroo Jim Shaw, and songwriters Robert John Jones and Dennis Knutson.
The album opens with Homer Joyâ€™s New Orleans-tinged â€œJohn Law.â€ Joy played an important role in Owensâ€™ career as the writer of his comeback vehicle â€œStreets of Bakersfield,â€ and here he writes a tale of a colorful night in a county jail. The songâ€™s opening lyric tips its hat to Don Rich, who plays guitar on this 1973 track. By this point in Owensâ€™ career, he wasnâ€™t writing much, but he collected good material from RJ Jones, Jim Shaw, David Knutson and David Frizzell. Though still grieving the loss of Don Rich, he puts on a brave face for a few up-tempo numbers, but really digs into the sad songs of cheating spouses, lost souls and fraying relationships. The title trackâ€™s reminiscence, written by Jim Shaw and RJ Jones, proved dear to Owens as he thought back on the road traveled with Rich and the Buckaroos, and â€œA Different Kind of Sad,â€ again by RJ Jones, could easily have been written for Owens about Rich.
Owensâ€™ distress eventually sapped his drive for recording, but it never dented his talent or star power. The mood here is more sedate than the explosive performances of his early, groundbreaking years, but Owens poured his sorrow into his singing, and found enough resonance with this material to re-record many of these songs for Warner Bros. The studio hands that backed those later recordings, though Nashville pros, didnâ€™t muster the deep connection that Owens found with his Buckaroos, and Owens himself didnâ€™t sound as emotionally invested as he had on these original drafts. After more than forty years, itâ€™s a real treat for Owensâ€™ many fans to have this album finally released. Itâ€™s a more fitting bookend to his Capitol career than a sixth volume of hits, and shows that even amid in his personal and professional grief he found solace in music. [Â©2018 Hyperbolium]
Sarah Borges has never been one to be pigeonholed. As both a solo act, and leading the Broken Singles, sheâ€™s explored country, rock, rock â€˜nâ€™ roll, rockabilly, psych, pop and numerous points in between. Her third album fronting the Broken Singles – the first in nine years- continues to indulge a variety of musical muses, including hard-charging rockers and mid-tempo laments, as she explores separation, loneliness, desire and dysfunction. The album opens with â€œHouse on a Hill,â€ immersing herself in the dichotomy between lingering feelings and the growing apprehension of an unraveling marriage. Similar tensions animate the balance of need and want in â€œLucky Rocks,â€ the sober retrospective of â€œAre You Still Takinâ€™ Them Pillsâ€ and the introspective closer â€œI Canâ€™t Change It.â€ The latter contemplates whatâ€™s changed, what remains, and in the chorus, the effort needed to distance the present from a troubled past. Borgesâ€™ protagonists arenâ€™t shy about their questionable choices, including problematic hookups and a murder ballad, but with â€œGrow Wingsâ€ she suggests that itâ€™s songwriting that allows her introverted soul to freely express its troubles. Borgesâ€™ music has been likened to Sheryl Crow meets Joan Jett, but her music might also be likened to the emotional rock of New England compatriot Robin Lane and her 1980s band the Chartbusters. A little bit country, folk and blues, and a whole lot rock â€˜nâ€™ roll. [Â©2018 Hyperbolium]
For a songwriter of Willie Nelsonâ€™s stature, itâ€™s surprising that his early â€˜60s Nashville demos have received so little attention. A few slipped out on compilations and bootlegs, but it wasnâ€™t until 2003 that Sugar Hill pulled together fifteen for Crazy: The Demo Sessions. And it was thirteen more years until Sony expanded the catalog with two volumes of digital downloads on The Demo Project. Real Gone now collects the latter two volumes into physical CD and LP releases, augmenting the twenty-eight tracks with liner notes by Colin Escott, and photos from the archives of Bear Family founder Richard Weize. As with the previous releases, the recordings are clean and compelling, and with only partial overlap of the 2003 Sugar Hill disc, this is an essential addition to any Willie Nelson fanâ€™s collection.
Nelson signed a publishing deal with Pamper Music in 1960 and commenced to churning out songs and demos with his guitar and in off-hour sessions with Nashville A-listers. The material includes many of his most iconic compositions – â€œCrazy,â€ â€œFunny (How Time Slips Away),â€ â€œHello Walls,â€ â€œNight Life,â€ â€œPretty Paperâ€ – first turned into hits by Patsy Cline, Faron Young, Ray Price, Roy Orbison and others. But also heard here are the initial takes on songs that would populate Nelsonâ€™s early albums for Liberty and RCA, and fully flower in the years after heâ€™d shucked off Nashvilleâ€™s stylistic straightjacket. His idiosyncratic vocal phrasing had yet to fully form, but you can hear its roots here, and the sophistication of his songwriting was already steps ahead of the Nashville mainstream.
The band tracks are two-steps and shuffles, and though Nelson sings straight to the beat, his voice, melodies and lyrics are distinctive. The violence of â€œI Just Canâ€™t Let You Say Goodbyeâ€ probably wouldnâ€™t be released as a single today, but Nelson actually had middling success cutting it for RCA in 1965. The low strings on â€œLittle Thingsâ€ sound like Nelsonâ€™s guitar playing, though they donâ€™t have the tone of Trigger, and the walking bass line of â€œIâ€™m Gonna Lose a Lot of Teardropsâ€ and the acoustic blues guitar and fingersnaps of â€œNight Lifeâ€ offer changes of pace. Nelson turned out numerous songs of romantic dissolution, each colored with a unique shade of self-pity, anger or remorse, and â€œI Gotta Get Drunkâ€ sounds like something Hank Williams might have written had he lived into the 1960s.
Comparing these demos to their later incarnations provides an interesting lesson in what songwriters, singers, musicians and producers each contribute to a hit record. The lyrics of â€œPretty Paperâ€ provide a sympathetic portrait of the songâ€™s subject, but the demo couldnâ€™t anticipate the level of pathos that would be brought to the hit by Roy Orbison, producer Fred Foster and arranger Bill Justis. Similarly, Nelsonâ€™s demo of â€œCrazyâ€ suggested the phrasing that would turn it into a hit, but didnâ€™t take it to the crooning extreme that made it a signature for Patsy Cline. The talking guitar that threads through â€œHello Wallsâ€ is a nice period touch, but only a placeholder for the answer vocals on Faron Youngâ€™s hit. As memorable as are the hits, itâ€™s a treat to hear these early sketches and enjoy Nelsonâ€™s early burst of songwriting genius. [Â©2018 Hyperbolium]