Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Best of the Country Blues
Genres: Country, Pop
Merle in absolute top form!
LtCol Richard L. Jones (USAF-Retire | Warner Robins, GA USA | 09/06/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"In his prime, there was no better male country singer than Merle Haggard. His God-given vocal talent, mixed with the soul of a man who has seen it all, communicates with the listener just like his female #1 counterpart, Patsy Cline. Of all the type songs Merle does, blues seems to fit him best. As he says when introducing "Everybody's Had the Blues, Sometime", a song on this CD: "Nobody has the right to sing the blues unless they've had 'em, and I certainly have had the blues a time or two." Merle told Johnny Cash once that he enjoyed Cash's performance at San Quentin prison. Johnny said he didn't remember Merle being on that show. "I wasn't, said Merle, I was in the audience." The songs on this CD come straight from his heart, which is bigger than life. Also, Merle's band is one of the best group of virtuoso musicians ever assembled, with Norman Hamlett on lead guitar, especially. You'll enjoy it, I promise."
The Ultimate Country Blues Album - One of Merle's Best!
Gerald Lyda | San Antonio, TX USA | 05/21/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"For 40 years, Merle Haggard has been singing in beer joints and dance halls. As a result, he's grown tired of the grind--and it shows in his recent recordings and live performances. This re-packaged collection of Capitol recordings is just the ticket to re-visit Haggard in his prime. I originally purchased this album to get the Hank Williams song, "Moanin' the Blues". What a surprise it was to find that a usually inept and indiscriminate Curb Records had put together this gem of an album. Merle Haggard seems to be happiest when performing the songs of the country greats that influenced his music. Men like Jimmie Rodgers, Bob Wills, Ernest Tubb, Hank Williams and Lefty Frizzell. There's no Lefty or Ernest Tubb here, but there are two Haggard-written songs (the familiar hit "Working Man Blues," and an upbeat "White Man Singing the Blues") as well as the Delmore Brothers classic, "Blues Stay Away from Me." While these songs are good, the rest of the album is even better. My favorite is "Moanin' the Blues" from a "live" album entitled "Everybody's Had the Blues" recorded in New Orleans. This rousing version is every bit as good as Hank Williams' recording--with the help of the tight rhythms of Merle's band, The Strangers. There are three great Jimmie Rodgers-written songs: "Blues for Dixie", "Mississipi Delta Blues" and "Gambling Polka Dot Blues", performed in the swaggering and bow-twirling Texas Playboy fashion of Bob Wills. Also included in the package is "T.B.Blues" written and recorded by Jimmie Rodgers at the end of his career while battling tuberculosis. This "live" recording was included in the same "Everybody's Had the Blues" album. Two other standouts are smooth-as-glass Bob Wills-written songs, "Cotton Patch Blues" and "Brain Cloudy Blues." The latter song was featured in Merle's tribute album to Bob Wills. While the songs on "The Best of Country Blues" were plucked from four different albums, the music blends together well. While I own most of Merle Haggard's albums, this is the album to which I return most often. These were Haggard's Capitol Years--when he was at the top of his game! Highly recommended."