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Happy Hosting, Happy New Year
During the mid-1980s, country music enjoyed a shot in the arm when the New Traditionalist era emerged. MCA Records and Columbia were up at the forefront and had in Janis Oliver (married to Vince Gill at the time) and Kristine Arnold (married to Leonard Arnold) (Sweethearts Of The Rodeo) two fine exponents, their two albums Sweethearts Of The Rodeo (1986) and One Time, One Night (1988) coupled with three bonus tracks (that though listed weren’t on my copy) make up this release. While the duo did re-emerge with an album in 2012 entitled, Restless I feel the possibilities of Sweethearts Of The Rodeo wasn’t fully realised.
Both albums see the girls surrounded by a set of superb Nashville pickers (Michael Rhodes, Roy Husky Jnr, Steve Gibson, Shane Keister, John Jarvis, Billy Walker, Harry Stinson, Ricky Skaggs, Augie Meyers, Paul Franklin, Mark O’Connor, Steve Buckingham….) and as they deliver a well chosen set of songs to go with four tracks that bear Janis Oliver (Gill)’s name; her co-writes with Dan Schlitz (“You Never Talk Sweet” and high stepping “Satisfy You”) and Gail Davies (“Gone Again”) appear alongside a rousing cover of Lennon – McCartney’s “I Feel Fine”. Schlitz’s songs make a big impact for “Midnight Girl / Sunset Town” and Craig Bickhart co-write heart-tugging ballad “If I Never See Midnight Again” are as big as most any songs on the collection.
Others to look out for include “Blue To The Bone” and “We Won’t Let That River Come Between Us” and a dreamy version of Don Everly’s “So Sad (To Watch Good Love Go Bad)”, plus with typical bounce to their vocals and tempo the title track of "One Time, One Night" comes from Los Lobos boys David Hidalgo - Louie Perez.
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