Ole Faithful [#] - Gene Autry, Carr, Michael [Song
Red River Valley - Gene Autry, Traditional
More vividly than anyone else, Gene Autry captured the romantic paradox of the Old West: a wide-open independence and excitement laced with periods of deep loneliness and depression. "Back in the Saddle Again," "Deep in th... more »e Heart of Texas," and "Jingle, Jangle, Jingle" are jubilant celebrations of life on the trail. "Tumblin' Tumbleweeds" and "Take Me Back to My Boots and Saddle" are plaintive reflections about the lure of the frontier. "Mexicali Rose" and "The Call of the Canyon" long for the women he's left behind. "The Last Round-Up" offers the somber words of a cowboy on his deathbed. This wonderful 18-song collection trots from Autry's early Jimmie Rodgers-inspired yodels to his warm-voiced pop ballads, and serves as a definitive single-CD overview of the ultimate "Singing Cowboy." --Marc Greilsamer« less
More vividly than anyone else, Gene Autry captured the romantic paradox of the Old West: a wide-open independence and excitement laced with periods of deep loneliness and depression. "Back in the Saddle Again," "Deep in the Heart of Texas," and "Jingle, Jangle, Jingle" are jubilant celebrations of life on the trail. "Tumblin' Tumbleweeds" and "Take Me Back to My Boots and Saddle" are plaintive reflections about the lure of the frontier. "Mexicali Rose" and "The Call of the Canyon" long for the women he's left behind. "The Last Round-Up" offers the somber words of a cowboy on his deathbed. This wonderful 18-song collection trots from Autry's early Jimmie Rodgers-inspired yodels to his warm-voiced pop ballads, and serves as a definitive single-CD overview of the ultimate "Singing Cowboy." --Marc Greilsamer
"All the 18 works selected are the classics of Mr. Autry.The melody of the first song,"the Yellow Rose of Texas" is quite different form the popular version we heard today.However, the interpretation of Gene is so emotional and with strong personal style.None can claim as a fan of Gene Autry without listening to "Back in the Saddle Again"-the milestone of Gene's Career, and also one of the most important country songs in the States. Besides these 2 Classics, the most impressive works, in my opinion, are "Blueberry Hill", a superb version even Fats Domino's No.1 Hit cover version in 1956 can't be compared with, "Call of the Canyon",the beautiful & emotional melody always give me me a fresh feeling even it's an oldie in nearly 60 years ago,"You are my Sunshine" ,"It Make No Difference Now","Jingle,Jangle,Jingle" and "Red River Velley" . You will find that the music & singing style of the Singing Cowboy varies from the 30's to 40's with creation & improvement so you will find no monotony in this disc.The only regret is that "Have I Told You Lately that I Love You",the most influential love song of Gene,I think, haven't been selected in this disc. In conclution, this CD is a must of the fans of Gene Autry,and also of country music lovers."
PATRICIA T. ALMDALE | AULANDER, NC USA | 06/22/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"As America's Favorite Singing Cowboy, Gene Autry was without a doubt one of the most versatil entertainers in the history of radio, movies and tv. This CD is a prime example of just how varied his music style could be. The majority of the songs on this album were eventually sung by him in the hit "B" western movies that he was so well know for. If you happen to chance across a Autry western and fall in love with the melodious voice and the wonderful personality that was Gene Autry, then this is an excellent CD to start out with. Many people are surprise to learn that Gene Autry recorded the ever popular "Blueberry Hill". For a romantic at heart the songs "Amapola", "Maria Elena","Mexicali Rose" and of course one of my favorites "Call Of The Canyon" are recommended, but if you also like the songs that take you back to a less hectic time in life when the Cowboy with the white hat was "Always" the Hero, then check out the ever popular "Back In The Saddle" and "I've got Spurs That Jingle, Jangle, Jingle". As a Gene Autry Fan and Collector, take it from me, if you are a fan old or new, this is a must have for your collection."
The definitive collection
PATRICIA T. ALMDALE | 02/11/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Having sampled most of the Gene Autry releases over the years, I have found this to be the definitive disc for either first-time buyers or die-hard aficionados of cowboy music by this American treasure. While this disc contains a few "pop" pieces such as Blueberry Hill (I had always thought that Fats Domino was the first to record it), even these are performed with a western flair. In contrast, many of the other Gene Autry collections include a number of tracks apparently intended to showcase the breadth of his style rather than focusing on the heart of his repertoire--cowboy songs. If this is your first Gene Autry disc, you'll probably want more. I suggest volume 3 of Songs of the West (also available from amazon.com), which is a nice mix of songs by Gene and early recordings by Roy Rogers with the Sons of the Pioneers."
There Were So Many More "Essential" Autry Selections Ignored
PATRICIA T. ALMDALE | 09/23/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"You will forgive me if I don't wax as enthusiastic as some of the other reviewers when it comes to this particular release for the original King of the Cowboys [he held that title way before Roy Rogers]. But it seems to me that when releasing a compilation under the title "The Essential Gene Autry 1933-1946", the majority of the contents should be reflective of his hit records.
It does include his first hit ever, The Last Round-Up, which reached # 12 in late 1933 on the Melotone label and was featured in The Ziegfield Follies Of 1934. So, too, is is third hit, Tumbling Tumbleweeds, a # 10 in February 1935, also on Melotone (his second hit, Ole Faithful, is at track 17, but that's a later re-recording). All of these preceded the advent of the Billboard Pop charts in 1940 and what then passed for the Country charts, which didn't get under way until 1944.
In the remaining 15 tracks, however, they give us exactly two of the 13 other Pop and 22 Country hits he registered from 1935 to 1952, those being I'm Thinking Tonight Of My Blue Eyes which, recorded in 1942, made it to # 3 Country in early 1944 for Columbia's Okeh subsidiary, and Jingle, Jangle, Jingle, which reached # 17 Pop in August 1942.
Should not an "essential" compilation include the likes of at least some of the following? the Vocalion releases That Silver-Haired Daddy Of Mine (# 7 Pop in 1935 with Jimmy Long), South Of The Border [Down Mexico Way] (# 12 Pop in late 1939; and Goodbye Little Darlin' Goodbye (# 20 Pop in July 1940); the Okeh issues Be Honest With Me (# 23 in May 1941) and You Are My Sunshine (# 23 Pop in September 1941); and these Columbia releases - Tweedle-O-Twill (# 16 Pop in January 1944); I Hang My Head And Cry (# 4 Country in April 1944); Gonna Build A Big Fence Around Texas (# 2 Country ) and its flipside Don't Fence Me In (# 4 Country - both in February 1945); At Mail Call Today (# 1 Country for EIGHT weeks) and its flipside I'll Be Back (# 7 Country) - both in May 1945; Don't Hang Around Me Anymore (# 4 Country in November 1945); Don't Live A Lie (# 4 Country) and its B-side I Want To Be Sure (also # 4) - both in January 1946; Silver Spurs (On The Golden Stairs) (# 4 Country in March 1946); I Wish I Had Never Met Sunshine (# 3 Country) and its B-side You Only Want Me When You're Lonely (# 7 Country) - both June 1946; Wave To Me, My Lady (# 4 Country in July 1946); Have I Told You Lately That I Love You? (# 3 Country) and its flipside Someday You'll Want Me To Want You (# 4 Country) - both November 1946. Then, of course, there's You're Not My Darlin' Anymore (# 3 Country in March 1947) and Buttons And Bows from the film Paleface, which reached # 6 Country and # 17 Pop in late 1948.
Their omission immediately begs the question: who decides what is essential, the fans who bought or demanded to hear those records either on radio or in juke boxes at a rate that put them onto the charts, or some suit at Columbia who was likely just a gleam in his father's eye when Gene was recording them?
The five pages of liner notes written in 1992 by Country music historian Charles Wolfe, while interesting, do not explain how the process of selection was carried out (unlike, say, their Essential Carl Smith or Ray Price releases which DO contain mostly hits).
There are a few nice photos of Gene inside as well as vintage advertisements for a Gene Autry guitar and one of his song books. The sound quality is also excellent, but these assets do not overcome the fact that the songs selected - overall - leave a lot to be desired. Like the box-set for Bill Monroe, not one of their best efforts in their Essential series.
Incidentally, Blueberry Hill was also recorded in 1940 - the same year as Gene's version - by Glenn Miller (Ray Eberle vocal); Kay Kyser (Harry Babbitt vocal); and Russ Morgan (Carol Kay vocal). Louis Armstrong also recorded it in 1949, and his version became a hit in 1956 a couple of months after the Fats Domino version."