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Customer reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars

on 9 September 2013
This is a rare CD. Great collection of tracks which are Country artists but have a funky/soulful feel. Highly recommended if you can find it.
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on 21 October 2004
Acknowledging the similarities between the sounds of Nashville and Memphis, this superior collection covers the principal Southern American country singers of the late '60s and early '70s who one way or another also made their mark on their soul contemporaries.
The likes of Wayne Carson, Tony Joe White and gravel-voiced Eddie Hinton cover typical country themes of heartache and dreams of fleeing hardship. But these songs could easily have been managed by the likes of Otis or Aretha, which is the whole point of the album.
Proving that country music can even be funky, Townes Van Zant's "Black Widow Blues" may well turn up on David Holmes' next compilation. Best of all is Bobbie Gentry's "Fancy", the tale of a poor mother buying her daughter a lavish dress so she can start a better life in the city.
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on 2 August 2004
A fine compilation of blue-eyed soul and funk-tinged country music from the late 1960s and early 1970s, the 'Country Got Soul' series is an easy way of sampling some of the best tracks from this rather neglected genre.
It's almost worth buying just for the opening track - Tony Joe White's 'High Sherriff of Calhoun Parish', a narrative driven by bluesy acoustic guitar, harmonica and moody, atmospheric strings. Wayne Carson's 'Soul Deep' has touches of Memphis-period Elvis, while 'Ohoopee River Bottomland', by the rich-voiced Larry John Wilson, is a wonderful slice of countryfied funk (or, if you prefer, funkified country) with more fine guitar, horns, and even handclaps on the final verse. It's brilliant.
Not everything on the album reaches the same heights - I find Jim Ford's voice can't quite match his (considerable) ambition in 'Harlan County', Eric Quincy Tate's James Brown imitation remains just that, while Donnie Fritts' recent 'Muscle Shoals' feels a little flat. But they're still listenable and when combined with the impassioned singing of Eddie Hinton, or the righteously funky 'Fancy' by Bobbie Gentry (a track you'll enjoy if you also enjoyed her more familiar 'Ode to Billie Joe'), the whole album seems a consistent package with no real 'filler'. All this and Townes Van Zant too! It's certainly worth a try.
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on 27 November 2004
This is one of the best collections of country music available. I am a big country fan (Steve Earle rather than Dolly Parton) and my girl-friend hates it. I got this album and she has been playing it every day for a month. Every song on the album is good, but there are a couple of classics. Recommended even for non-country fans....
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on 24 May 2007
This has to be up there as one of the most thoughtfully compiled collections ever - yes, it's even better than the first volume, and that's saying something. Anyone checking this out will probably be familiar with funky swamp god Tony Joe White (whose High Sheriff Of Calhoun Parish is one of his finest) but it's the lesser-known tracks here that really make this worth owning. Personal favourites are Larry Jon Wilson's Ohoopee River Bottomland, a funky, wah-wah-drenched gem worthy of Tony Joe at his best; Jim Ford's frankly outrageous Harlan County, which is a belting, nothing-held-back country soul treasure; Sandra Rhodes' Sowed Love And Reaped A Heartache, which is up there with James Carr's version (no mean feat!); and the brilliant Townes Van Zandt's Black Widow Blues - who knew the late, great country genius could be so funky? In short, get hold of this if you can - top, top quality stuff.
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