Friday, August 13, 2010

Country Music Playing on the Radio

The title is a reference to a dirty lyric in NOFX's "Together on the Sand." I won't go into why it's inappropriate, but the next part is " I turned it off." This was generally my opinion about country music for a long time-- it belonged in pickup trucks and on the beaches of the gulf coast. But I've come around and realized there are very specific country music styles that I dislike; mostly anything considered "pop" or "Nashville." I slowly became a country fan through the genre, specifically through Ryan Adams' work, and then I finally came to enjoy what I consider "classic" country when I heard Johnny Cash. So I knew who Patsy Cline was, but never really heard her music.

Artist: Patsy Cline
Album: The Patsy Cline Collection (4 discs)
Recording #254
Stream all 103 songs here
So at first listen, I thought "well this is nice, but I don't think I need 4 CDs worth of Patsy Cline." FALSE! The more I listened, the more I craved. My favorite track, "Lovesick Blues," I had never heard until this book and the Hank Williams version. It's one of those standards that everyone has done, but Patsy's version is really the only one that I can put up there with Williams' as just an awesome song (want to hear other versions, including Ryan Adams and LeAnne Rimes?) By the time I got to the more famous songs, like "Crazy," I had already fallen in love with the stripped down versions of her stuff she was doing on the radio before she became big. Her voice is so big, and I see the influence it had on some of my favorite female singers (Neko Case and Jenny Lewis at her most country-tinged) and she just knows how to sing a love song. So if you've heard Patsy before, and found her stuff not bad, then I think you might want to start this box set at "Walking the Dog" and just sit back and take in the breadth of her catalog. Worth the trip.

Buy the album here

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