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V.A. - Night Train to Nashville  Music City Rhythm & Blues, 1945-1970 [2004]

V.A. - Night Train to Nashville Music City Rhythm & Blues, 1945-1970 [2004]

Music Box
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Release Date: Feb 24, 2004
Issued to coincide with the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum's historic exhibit of the same name, this two-CD set is a treasure-trove of hits, misses, rarities, and smoking grooves. Certainly Nash Vegas is the capital of country music, but in its day it also boasted a wealth of stomping rhythm and blues music that flourished in the city for the better part of three decades, until the bulldozers of "urban renewal" destroyed much of its cultural base and forced it from its terrain. With 35 tracks, plus a pair of bonus tracks that are commercials, this set is an affordable, indispensable introduction to a nearly forgotten part of American musical history. The labels represented here are a cross-section of the great regional independents that were so numerous n the '40s, '50s and '60s. Imprints such as Do-Ra-Mi, who recorded Audrey Bryant, Excello, Champion, Sun, Hickory, Bullet, Dial, A-Bet, Elf, and Sound Stage recorded both luminaries and nobodies. Here are early sides by Hank Crawford when he was in a jump band, the wild and wooly Esquerita, Joe Tex, Arthur Alexander, Roscoe Shelton, Joe Simon, Etta James, Johnny Adams, and Christine Kittrell. And there are cuts by cats like Johnny Jones, Nashville's premier blues guitar slinger, Audrey Bryant, the city's Sarah Vaughan, and others who scored big on Nashville radio and jukeboxes, such as Peggy Scott and Jo Jo Benson, Clifford Curry, and Robert Knight. While some of these names might not mean much to causal listeners of old rhythm and blues and soul, connoisseurs will be delighted to find these sides, many of them on CD for the first time. However, the appeal of this collection should not be limited to aficionados, as virtually every track is crackling with energy, verve, and raw immediate soul. Sound is better than decent, the selection is impeccable, and the track notes by Michael Gray are top-notch.

Track list:

101.Cecil Gant - Nashville Jumps
102.Rudy Green & His Orchestra - Buzzard Pie
103.Kid King's Combo - Skip's Boogie
104.Christine Kittrell - L&N Special
105.Christine Kittrell - Sittin' Here Drinking
106.The Prisonaires - Just Walkin' in the Rain
107.The Varieteers - If You and I Could be Sweethearts
108.Arthur Gunter - Baby Let's Play House
109.Little Hank [Crawford] & the Rhythm Kings - Christene
110.Louis Brooks & His Hi-Toppers with Earl Gaines - It's Love Baby (24 Hours a Day)
111.The Marigolds - Rollin' Stone
112.Gene Allison - You Can Make It If You Try
113.Esquerita - Rockin' the Joint
114.Audry Bryant - Let's Trade a Little
115.Roscoe Shelton - Say You Really Care
116.Larry Birdsong - Somebody, Somewhere
117.Jimmy Beck & His Orchestra - Pipe Dreams
118.Little Richard - WLAC commercial
119.Earl Gaines - White Rose (theme)

201.John Richbourg - WLAC Air Check - Shy Guy Douglas - Monkey Doin' Woman
202.Etta James - What'd I Say (Live)
203.Johnny Jones & the Imperial 7 - Really (Part 1)
204.Frank Howard & the Commanders - Just Like Him
205.Arthur Alexander - Anna (Go to Him)
206.Joe Henderson - Snap Your Fingers
207.Ruth Brown - Mama, He Treats Your Daughter Mean (Nashville Version)
208.Sam Baker - Something Tells Me
209.Bobby Hebb - Sunny
210.Joe Tex - I Want To (Do Everything for You)
211.The Hytones - Bigger and Better
212.The Avons - Since I Met You Baby
213.Joe Simon - The Chokin' Kind
214.Clifford Curry - She Shot a Hole in My Soul
215.The Valentines - Gotta Get Yourself Together
216.Peggy Scott & Jo Jo Benson - Soul Shake
217.Johnny Adams - Reconsider Me
218.Robert Knight - Everlasting Love

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The album code is : ODI153203