1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
They kept on rockin',
This review is from: Rockabilly Kings (Audio CD)
In 1974 UK Polydor issued the eight tracks that cult rockabilly man Charlie Feathers recorded for the King label together with eight tracks from fellow rockabilly artist Mac Curtis which were also recorded for King. Hence the punning title. At that time none of these tracks had been released anywhere other than in their original King single format which records were fetching tidy sums on the second hand market. This album is an expansion of the Polydor set with bonus tracks from Curtis and alternate takes from Feathers. It just had to be Ace Records that put this reissue together.
In many respects this album can be regarded as a cornerstone of any good rockabilly collection. The Feathers tracks are essential. There's no other word for it. Some of them do crop up in comps - mainly "One Hand Loose" and "Bottle to the baby" - but you really need the lot. To put it simply, Charlie's talents were better recognised and more sympathetically recorded whilst he was at King than anywhere else during that key period of the `50's. For anyone who's stumbled on this review but hasn't heard Charlie yet, give yourself a treat and listen to him. I know there aren't any previews but you can find plenty of the man on Youtube. He has to be one of the key innovators of the genre.
Whilst the late Charlie Feathers was unconventional, Texan Mac Curtis was much more of a typical rockabilly artist with all the attributes, the slap bass, a lead guitarist who`d clearly listened to Scotty Moore, and loads of echo, all fully present and correct. Unlike Feathers he had no history of recording before he was signed by King and his first single, the excellent "If I had me a Woman / Just so you call me", was released. Though I have to add that it doesn't sound as if this is the first single of a 17 year old! This album contains all his A sides for King plus several B sides plus other unreleased tracks. There is what claims to be a full set of Mac's King material out on the Charly label but what's contained here is a pretty good selection.
One gets the impression that Mac Curtis was a more phlegmatic and laidback character than the somewhat irascible Charlie Feathers who may well have shot himself in the foot more than once. Curtis in contrast, managed to prolong and amplify his beginnings into a fairly solid career taking full advantage of the European rockabilly revival in the `70's with plenty of releases on Ronnie Weiser's Rollin' Rock label, and more beyond. He also made a number of tour appearances which were well received and, no doubt helped him to move more product.
The sign off on the Mac Curtis site as managed by Rockabilly Hall of Fame is "Keep on Rockin'". I'd say that both these gentlemen kept on rockin' in their different ways.