“Folsom Prison looms large in Johnny Cash’s legacy, providing the setting for perhaps his definitive song and the location for his definitive album, At Folsom Prison. The ideal blend of mythmaking and gritty reality, At Folsom Prison is the moment when Cash turned into the towering Man in Black, a haunted troubadour singing songs of crime, conflicted conscience, and jail.”
~Stephen Thomas Erlewine (allmusic.com)
One of the best live albums in recording history was taped on this date in 1968, hell, it’s one of the best albums period. Today it is it’s 48-year anniversary.
“The preacher asked her and she said, ‘I do’
The preacher asked me and she said, ‘Yes, he does too’
The preacher said, ‘I pronounce you 99 to life
Son, she’s no lady, she’s your wife.’ “
– Lyle Lovett (She’s No Lady)
“Writes like Guy Clark, only plainer, sings like Jesse Winchester only countrier.”
– Robert Christgau
“While Lyle Lovett’s self-titled debut album made it clear he was one the most gifted and idiosyncratic talents to emerge in country music in the 1980s, his follow-up, 1987’s Pontiac, took the strengths of his first disc and refined them, and the result was a set whose sound and feel more accurately reflected Lovett’s musical personality.”
– Mark Deming (allmusic)
This classic country album was Lyle Lovett’s second album, and to me it’s his best still. The Texas singer-songwriter uses the same elements that made his 1986 debut such a delight, dry humour, observational storytelling told in a personal and devastating way. Relationship stories as dark and as funny as they sometimes are…and with great singing and music.
Vince Gill and Emmylou Harris visits on this first of many masterpieces from Lyle Lovett.
Pontiac (official video):
The release date is uncertain, some sites said it was released in 1987, but most reviews started coming out mid January 1988. Anyway that’s not the important part, what’s important is to celebrate a very fine album no matter if it was released December 1987 or January 1988.
“Elvis has come out with a record which gives us some of the very finest and most affecting music since he first recorded for Sun almost 17 years ago”- Peter Guralnick (Rolling Stone Magazine 1971)
“…Elvis was at his peak when he cut Elvis Country. Actually, Elvis Presley was positively on a roll at the time. A decade after the end of what were thought to be his prime years, he was singing an ever-widening repertory of songs with more passion and involvement than he’d shown since the end of the 1950s…”
~Bruce Eder (allmusic.com)
Elvis Presley – Funny How Time Slips Away (Willie Nelson):
Sing Me Back Home is the fifth studio album by singer and songwriter Merle Haggard, released in 1968 on Capitol Records.
“Sing Me Back Home follows the blueprint of Merle Haggard’s first three albums, balancing a hit single with album tracks and a couple of covers, but there is a difference. Where the previous album Branded Man was a transitional album, hinting that Haggard’s talents were deepening substantially, Sing Me Back Home is the result of the flowering of his talent.”
– Thomas Erlewine (allmusic)
Merle Haggard appeared on Austin City Limits nine times over the course of his legendary career. Here’s “Sing Me Back Home” from his appearance in 1978:
Hank Williams (September 17, 1923 – January 1, 1953), born Hiram King Williams, is regarded as one of the most important country music artists of all time. Williams recorded 35 singles (five released posthumously) that would place in the Top 10 of the Billboard Country & Western Best Sellers chart, including 11 that ranked number one.Hank Williams died in 1953 and Townes Van Zandt died in 1997
John Townes Van Zandt (March 7, 1944 – January 1, 1997), best known as Townes Van Zandt, was an American Texas Country-folk music singer-songwriter, performer, and poet. Many of his songs, including “If I Needed You,” “To Live is to Fly,” and “No Place to Fall” are considered standards of their genre.