Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Country Music Hall of Fame
Genres: Country, Pop, Rock
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Paints a good picture
Cory L. Schwent | Bloomsdale, MO United States | 05/06/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I give this 4 stars not because this is the definite Kitty Wells collection, because it isn't. I give it four stars because it is one of the few collections that offer a good sampling of her ORIGINAL recordings.Now, let me tell you about an ideal Kitty Wells set. Take all of her top 10's and some of her lesser known songs and there you go, it's not that hard to figure out. By listening to the songs here, you imagine that Kitty bacically played the housewife who was fighting for a say in what went on. True, but there was much more to her than that.She was a masterful honky tonk singer, an excellent gospel singer, and when the "Nashville Sound" hit in the 1960's she mastered that also. In fact, Kitty was probably one of the most versatile performers in country music history.To summerize, this is a great set, all the songs are original recordings, and the notes are awesome. But, you need to hear a lot more of her songs to understand what she was all about.And also, avoid her Step One recordings as well as anything that in on Deluxe, Compass, or anything that doesn't say "Decca," "MCA," or "Bear Family" somewhere on the package.Pray that Bear Family will release a 28 or 30 song cd of her hits."
This is the CD to get for Kitty's original hits
Bradley Olson | Bemidji, MN United States | 03/24/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"If you ended up buying a single CD collection of Kitty's hits and didn't get the original recordings, or if you are looking for the definitive Kitty Wells hits CD for a budget price, this is the CD to get. This CD does contain many of her classics ranging from "It Wasn't God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels," "Making Believe," "Amigo's Guitar," "Password," and 10 more of her classics hits. There is an unreleased track on this CD at the time this was released in 1991, entitled "Icicles Hanging From My Heart," which is a classic. This is a must have for all classic country fans."
The Original Honky Tonk Angel ... But The CD Is Lacking
Bradley Olson | 08/11/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Obviously the best bet for anyone seeking the hits of Kitty Wells would be that Bear Family box set - but then, not all of us can afford it. So we scroll through the others currently listed and find that a great many are out of stock, most are quite minimal in the tracks offered [10 to 12], and far too many present later remakes of her hit singles [e.g., the Tee Vee compilation, Volumes 1 and 2 of Step One Records' Kitty Wells Greatest Hits, Curb's Greatest Songs, and King's Kitty Wells Greatest Hits].
When you narrow it all down there are two single-CD releases which present original renditions of her many hits, the best of which by far would be God's Honky Tonk Angel: The First Queen Of Country Music from Edsel Records of the U.K. Which shouldn't be all that surprising since the best compilations of the hits of American Country stars of the past come from the U.K. or Continental Europe [Bear Family is in Germany], ridiculous as that may seem.
The other decent compilation is this volume from MCA's The Country Music Hall Of Fame Series, but here their choice of selections is somewhat puzzling. I realize it doesn't claim to be her greatest or best, but when dealing with an artist who put 81 songs on the Country charts from 1952 to 1979, all but the last three with Decca (now MCA) you might think that an 18-selection volume would at least give us 18 bona-fide hits.
It starts off well with her first and best hit ever, It Wasn't God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels, the 1952 "answer song" to Hank Thompson's Wild Side Of Life. Not as huge a hit as Thompson's [his stayed on the charts for 30 weeks, 15 of them at # 1], it nevertheless spent 18 weeks on the charts, 6 at # 1 and also crossed over to the Pop charts at # 27. That quickly set a pattern for Kitty whose next two hits were also in the "answer song" category - Paying For That Back Street Affair [a # 6 response to Webb Pierce's Back Street Affair in 1953], and Hey Joe, the # 8 answer to Carl Smith's tune of the same name. But instead of giving us that hit side, they present the uncharted B-side here at track 4. They do the same with her first "non-answer" tune - Cheatin's A Sin - which reached # 9 in January 1954, giving us instead the uncharted B-side I Gave My Wedding Dress Away.
You might have thought they would have at least included Jealousy, another that crossed over to the Billboard Pop Top 100 (# 7 Country/# 78 Hot 100 in 1958), but no, for some reason the producers decided we, her fans, would prefer those two uncharted B-sides, one failed single [track 2] and one previously unreleased track , rather than hits such as that, or Left To Right [# 5 in 1960], Unloved Unwanted [# 5 in 1962], and You Don't Hear [# 4 in 1965]. They were wrong.
At least the remainder were among her very best, ranging from Makin' Believe [# 2 for 15 weeks in 1955 and kept from the top spot only by the spectacular success of Webb Pierce's In The Jailhouse Now which spent an incredible 21 weeks at # 1], to A Woman Half My Age, # 15 in 1966. It also includes her only other solo # 1, Heartbreak U.S.A., which spent 4 weeks at that position in 1961.
Four pages of liner notes by Ronnie Pugh of The Country Music Foundation are quite informative, and are followed by a partial discography of the contents, omitting only chart details. The AAD sound quality is excellent.
Married [in 1937] to Johnny Wright of Johnny & Jack fame, and the mother of Country stars Bobby and Ruby Wright, Kitty was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1976, and in 1991 was awarded Grammy's Lifetime Achievement Award. She deserves to have her career honoured with a series of single CD releases containing all her hits. There's plenty to choose from."