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DICKEY LEE —NEVER ENDING SONG OF LOVE — ASHES OF LOVE (Hux Records)

 

www.huxrecords.com

 

I wasn’t too sure what to expect from this collection. For some reason I hadn’t heard in depth, the early country releases from Dickey Lee other than a little later in his career. It was at the time of his biggest country hit (late 1970s) and “9, 999, 999 Tears” as he has always done, cleverly combine country with pop. If not on my essential list Dickey Lee knew a good song when he heard it and loved to record them! His ability to select a good a song should not be a surprise because over the years he’s written his share; and had them recorded by everyone from Emmylou Harris to George Strait by way of Joe Cocker, Don Williams, Tracy Byrd, Doug Stone, Reba McEntire and George Jones (who had a hit with arguably his best ever creation “She Thinks I Still Care”, a co-write with Steve Duffy it figures among the songs included).  

 

Back to this collection, released in 1971 – 1972, respectively Lee’s songwriting is supplemented by superb material from Tom T. Hall “The Year Clayton Delaney Died”, “Take Me Home Country Roads” (I don’t think I’ve heard many better versions), Johnny Russell hit “Catfish John”. Written by two of my favourite songwriters of the time, Bob McDill and Allen Reynolds it enjoys tasty banjo, pedal steel and a general stylish production) and with his heart pinned to the mast “Got Leavin’ On Her Mind”, and for good measure he eases, seamlessly through “It’s Four In The Morning” (a hit for Faron Young).  

 

As for his own songs, “Weekends” it has to come close to being my favourite, but it has keen competition with others, which like it were co-writes with another famed songwriter Allen Reynolds. Not least among them you have wry ballad,  “Mahogany Pulpit” (hits of the song “Deck Of Cards”) and sad-eyed ode “(There’s) Nobody Home To Go Home To”, opening track “Never Ending Song Of Love” and the excellent piece of writing “Southbound”. By now I was starting to realize how much I have missing all these years! 

 

Back to the covers and what a fine job he does of Jimmie Rodger’s “Waiting For A Train”, Gove Scrivenor’s “I Saw My Lady” and with darting fiddle, pedal steel, harmonica and harmony vocals “Sparkling Brown Eyes” rounds off this totally enjoyable release. Well-spotted Hux Records in giving the music of Dickey Lee, who happened to start his career at Memphis’ famed Sun Studios as a rock’n’roll act added exposure. 

 

                                                Maurice Hope    

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www.euroamericanachart.eu

1
Rod Picott
70 pts.
Out Past The Wires
Welding Rod Music
GC,AN,LM,SZ,TK
2
JW Roy & The Royal Family
62 pts.
A Room Full Of Strangers
Royal Family Records
EM,PJ,DH
3
Steph Cameron
61 pts.
Daybreak over Jackson Street
Pheromona
ML
4
JD McPherson
54 pts.
Undivided Heart & Soul
New West
AR,RK,LK
5
Sarah Morris
53 pts.
Hearts In Need Of Repair
Independent
 
6
Turnpike Troubadours
52 pts.
Long Away From Your Heart
Bossier City Records
MA,GF
7
Chris Hillman
51 pts.
Bidin' My Time
Rounder
 
8
Hayward Williams
39 pts.
Pretenders
Why River Records
KG,JB,JBO
9
Joe Henry
38 pts.
Thrum
Ear Music
 
10
Jim White
37 pts.
Waffles, Triangles & Jesus
Loose Music
JJ
12
Margo Price
35 pts.
All American Made
Third Man Records
 
11
Mark Martyre
35 pts.
Rivers
Independent
MF
13
Mavis Staples
32 pts.
If All I Was Was Black
Anti
HO
 
Peter Oren
32 pts.
Anthropocene
Western Vinyl
RB,HB
15
Fred Wickham
29 pts.
Mariosa Delta
Thirty Days Records
 
16
Jeffrey Martin
27 pts.
One Go Around
Fluff & Gravy Records
HDB
17
Blitzen Trapper
25 pts.
Wild and Reckless
Lojinx
JDO
 
Jeff Crosby
25 pts.
Postcards From Magdalena
At The Helm Records
FCE,FC,JS
19
Dori Freeman
24 pts.
Letters Never Read
Blue Hens Music
 
 
Hardpan
24 pts.
Hardpan
Blue Rose Records
WR
21
The Deep Dark Woods
21 pts.
Yarrow
Six Shooter
JF
22
Lilly Hiatt
20 pts.
Trinity Lane
New West
TJ
 
Tom Russell
20 pts.
Folk Hotel
Frontera Records-Proper Records
JAB
24
Eilen Jewell
19 pts.
Down Hearted Blues
Signature Sounds
MW
25
Dick LeMasters
18 pts.
Incompatible Things
Longneck Road Music
FS

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