Sunday Morning Coming Down

More from that “Rich Hall’s Countrier Than You” documentary that I mentioned last week now, and an artist who features there, performing and being interviewed, and who has featured here before:

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Robbie Fulks – Every Kind of Music But Country

She’s not right for you, Robbie.

With thanks to the regular reader who kindly sent me a copy of that entire album recently. I’ll name no names but you know who you are. Cheers!

More soon.

Sunday Morning Coming Down

One of the TV shows that I had recorded and finally got round to watching last week was “Rich Hall’s Countrier Than You”, where the American comedian takes us through a brief history of Country music, and illustrates the different styles by asking his interviewees to help him out with a song he’s written, ‘Working Dog’.

It’s a comprehensive overview, introducing me to many artists who I’d never heard of, letting me know what some (Robbie Fulks, predominantly) look like, and making me realise that there’s some artists who I really should have featured on these pages by now.

For example: how the hell have I been writing this series every week for almost two years (although it didn’t become a Country music only slot until some time later) and not posted anything by Hank Williams?

Let me rectify that immediately. Here’s his first ever single, released on Sterling Records back in 1947:

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Hank Williams and The Country Boys – Never Again (Will I Knock on Your Door)

This didn’t sell well, however after signing to MGM records, the song was re-issued in 1948 as the B-Side to a song which became Williams’ first big smash:

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Hank Williams with His Drifting Cowboys – Lovesick Blues

More soon.

Sunday Morning Coming Down

This morning’s slice of Country is a song which I’ve known since I was a kid, and which I was reminded of when it featured at the start of this week’s episode of Fargo.

It’s a song which has always made me chuckle, for two reasons, one of which is deliberate on the part of the singer/songwriter, the other, I suspect, less so.

The intentional one is the joke about the definition of the word “egotistical”.

The unintentional one comes in the introduction, where we’re expected to believe that Mac Davis, of whom I have never heard anything else by, is headlining at a nightclub and being put up in “Star Suites”.

And then I do a teensy bit of research to pad this post out a little, and find that he wrote “In the Ghetto” and “A Little Less Conversation” for Elvis. And that he recorded and performed with Nancy Sinatra. And that he hosted an edition of The Muppet Show, where he performed today’s track.

Looks like I’m back to chuckling in the places where I’m supposed to, then.

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Mac Davis – It’s Hard to be Humble

Oh hang on. I can chuckle at his perm instead.

More soon.

Sunday Morning Coming Down

As expected, Foo Fighters rawk and rolled with great gusto on the Pyramid Stage at Glastonbury last night. I’d love to post something by them this morning, but they don’t exactly fit the Country vibe we have going on here of a Sunday morning.

Lucky for us, then, that a few years ago Glenn Campbell recorded a cover of the song they opened with last night:

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Glen Campbell – Times Like These

More soon.

Sunday Morning Coming Down

A couple of months ago, I wrote that I had heard a rumour that my favourite Country star of all time, Kris Kristofferson, was going to play the Legends Slot on the Sunday at Glastonbury.

Although I didn’t say so at the time, I feared for him a little; when I saw him about ten years ago in Bristol, it was just him and an acoustic guitar, and I felt that were he to perform in the same style at Glasto, with no backing band, he would probably be dwarfed by the occasion.

Factor in his memory loss problems, and you can understand where I’m coming from.

His memory loss is interesting, not just because it gives my Dad the opportunity to tell his story about the time he saw Kristofferson play a few years ago, and had to prompt him with one of the lines to “Sunday Morning Coming Down”. (“Someone frying chicken!” he called from the audience, as the Country star faltered).

See, for years, doctors had been telling Kristofferson that his increasingly debilitating memory loss was due to either Alzheimer’s or to dementia brought on by blows to the head from the boxing, football and rugby of youth.

Then, in 2016, a doctor decided to test Kristofferson for Lyme disease; it came back positive. His wife believes he picked it up from a tick as he crawled around the forest floor in Vermont making a movie.  He gave up his Alzheimer’s and depression pills and went through three weeks of Lyme-disease treatment and now is, well, he may not be perfectly healthy, but his memory is as good as any 80 year old has the right to expect it to be.

As it turned out, the rumours I had heard were incorrect; he is playing Glastonbury but not the Sunday Legend slot. Instead, he’s appearing on the Pyramid Stage on Friday afternoon, right after First Aid Kit. It’s a good slot for a Country star to play: I saw Willie Nelson play at pretty much the same time back in 2010 and he was incredible.

In case you’re interested, The Sunday Legend slot at Glastonbury this year is being filled by Chic (and for that matter, Barry Gibb is on right before them). That, weather permitting, is going to be one heck of a party.

Anyway, back to Kristofferson. Here’s a couple of tracks from a favourite KK album of mine, 1971’s “The Silver Tongued Devil & I”; one I would think you will all know, and one which, much to the delight of some of my regular readers, includes a gravel-voiced spoken word intro:

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Kris Kristofferson – The Pilgrim Chapter 33

Kris Kristofferson – Loving Her Was Easier (Than Anything I’ll Ever Do Again)

Oh, and Happy Father’s Day to this old chap:

The Man Contented

 

Like father, like son(s).

More soon.

Sunday Morning Coming Down

It’s been a while since I posted anything by the late great Townes Van Zandt, so since I’m feeling a little delicate this morning (I seem to have left my voice in The Roundhouse), I’ll rectify that today with this from, erm, “The Late Great Townes Van Zandt” album:

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Townes Van Zandt – Don’t Let The Sunshine Fool Ya’

More soon.

Sunday Morning Coming Down

Last night and this morning’s posts were written before the latest terror attacks took place.

I thought about not posting them both, but since I often have said here that we should carry on regardless, that changing our daily routine is letting “them” win, I have decided to post as usual.

My thoughts, of course, are with all of those affected by last night’s attacks; my gratitude and admiration goes to our emergency services and the work they did and continue to do.

Carrying on from last night’s Roy Orbison post, here’s Johnny Cash covering a song written by Don Gibson, covered by many, but made famous by The Big O:

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Johnny Cash – A Legend in My Time

Orbison’s version was one of John Peel’s favourite songs, and somewhere I have Half Man Half Biscuit covering it, a version never commercially released (as far as I know), but included as one side of a limited edition 12″ single (The Fall were on the flipside contributing “Job Search”). Actually, as an extremely limited edition: only one copy was made and that was presented to Peel as a present on his 65th birthday. I’ll try and dig it out for y’all some time.

In other words, more soon.