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King of the Cowboys
Roy Rogers
King of the Cowboys
Genres: Country, Pop
  •  Track Listings (25) - Disc #1


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CD Details

All Artists: Roy Rogers
Title: King of the Cowboys
Members Wishing: 0
Total Copies: 0
Label: Asv Living Era
Release Date: 1/19/1999
Genres: Country, Pop
Styles: Cowboy, Classic Country
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPC: 743625529722

CD Reviews

These RCA Victor Studio Recordings Are Some of the Best!
Gerald Lyda | San Antonio, TX USA | 05/26/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Originally a trio, Roy Rogers co-founded the Sons of the Pioneers with Bob Nolan and Tim Spencer in 1934. The group's original 1934 version of "Tumbling Tumbleweeds" (recorded on August 8, 1934 and featured on this album) was a No. 13 pop hit for the group on Decca Records. Roy was still part of the Sons of the Pioneers when three Bob Nolan-written songs, "The Devil's Great-Grandson," "When the Golden Train Comes Down" and "Hold That Critter Down" were recorded in L.A. on December 14, 1937 for the ARC label, which shortly afterwards became Columbia Records. The Pioneer harmony is tight here with Bob Nolan and Lloyd Perryman sharing the lead vocal spotlight with Roy on all these tunes. Roy was an accomplished square dance caller. RCA Victor used fiddler Spade Cooley & his Buckle Busters as Roy's backup band for a square dance tune called "Round That Couple Go Through and Swing." This recording was made in Los Angeles on September 3, 1940.Afterwards, Roy Rogers and the Sons of the Pioneers went their separate ways. RCA Victor re-united them on August 10, 1945 and cut "Along the Navajo Trail." This version is one of the best recordings of this song ever made. The Pioneers limits itself to handling the backup vocals, while Perry Botkin's orchestra provides the music for the session. "Rock Me to Sleep in My Saddle" (recorded January 10, 1946) is an easy going tune with some nice steel guitar work and an infectious clip-clop beat. "I Can't Go On This Way" (also recorded January 10, 1946)is one of the best songs on the album--with its catchy lyrics and decidely pop music sound supplied by the Morton Scott orchestra with its violins, horns and accordion. Roy Rogers had his own radio show by 1946 when he recorded "I'm Restless," "My Heart Went That-A-Way," and "My Chickashay Gal" on September 4, 1946 in Los Angeles. Country Washburne & his orchestra, who were regulars on Roy's radio program, provided the music on these recordings. "I'm Restless" effectively uses the same steel guitar element, as well as the familiar clip-clop beat again. The bouncy "My Heart Went That-A-Way" (written by Roy & future wife Dale Evans) and "My Chickashay Gal" (co-written by fiddler/bandleader Spade Cooley) are great little numbers too! One of the highlights on the entire album is "Dangerous Ground" (recorded February 24, 1947. This song features catch lyrics and a bouncy beat. The rest of the tracks are well-produced studio recordings of songs featured on the radio show or in Roy's movies. "On the Old Spanish Trail" was recorded May 18, 1947 in Los Angeles, but "San Fernando Valley," "Roll On, Texas Moon," "Don't Fence Me In," "Yellow Rose of Texas" and the novelty song "Hawaiian Cowboy" were recorded on October 23 and 24, 1947 in Chicago. All of these Chicago tracks are well-done, but "Roll On, Texas Moon" is outstanding and is one of Roy's best recordings ever. Music was provided by the Dave Boehme orchestra.On December 1, 1947, Roy Rogers & the Pioneers went into the studio in L.A. and recorded a new rendition of "Home on the Range" along with two songs which were featured in the Pecos Bill portion of the Disney animated feature film, "Melody Time." Both "Pecos Bill" songs are included in this album. One of the songs which Roy recorded in the session, "Blue Shadows on the Trail," is regarded today as the best western recording ever made. This song is magical with its haunting lyrics and wonderful harmonies. All of the Pioneers were featured on the recording--Lloyd Perryman, Ken Carson, Bob Nolan, Tim Spencer, Hugh & Karl Farr, Pat Brady and even Shug Fisher. The song "Blue Shadows on the Trail" alone is worth the price of the album, but be forewarned. When Roy & the Pioneers sing: "Move along blue shadows, move along. Soon the dawn will come and you'll be on your way," this recording may touch your soul as it does mine. To this very day, every time I hear the Roy/Pioneers version of "Blue Shadows", I get goosebumps and wander back in time to when I was eight years old in Waco, TX. I'm sitting in a darkened theater watching the end of "Pecos Bill" when Roy & the Pioneers are singing "Blue Shadows" for a group of kids. The campfire is flickering, coyotes are wailing in the distance and I'm longing to be with Roy and the gang. What a memory and what a powerful recording that can have that effect on a 55 year old man. If you cherish this music like I do, you will want to add this album to your collection. Highly recommended."