Entertainment Weekly - 5/4/01, p.71
"...If you're curious but uninformed about [this] giant, start here..." - Rating: B-
Q - 8/01, p.1545 stars out of 5
- "...Essential...standing with the very best of American roots music..."
Q - p.1244 stars out of 5
- "Without Parsons, there would have been no Americana, and country might have faded away with old-style rock'n'roll."
Uncut - p.1165 stars out of 5
- "[T]he music he made has lost none of its magic - these honky tonk laments, country death songs and heartbreaking ballads remain uniquely unforgettable, forever haunting, eternally beautiful."
Mojo (Publisher) - 7/01, p.118
"...It's pretty much primo stuff if you think The Jayhawks are as important as Merle Haggard..."
Mojo (Publisher) - p.1124 stars out of 5
- "[T]here's some great music here - country, soul and cosmic - and most still sounds fresh."
SACRED HEARTS AND FALLEN ANGELS contains tracks by various bands featuring Gram Parsons as well as his solo material and projects.
Personnel includes: Gram Parsons (vocals, guitar, piano); Emmylou Harris (vocals, acoustic guitar, tambourine); Chris Etheridge (vocals, piano, bass); Glen Campbell, Jim McGuinn, Herb Peterson (vocals, guitar); Chris Hillman (vocals, bass); John Hartsford (guitar, banjo); Bernie Leadon (guitar, dobro); John Nuese, Bob Buchanan, Donnie Owens, Clarence White (guitar); Jay Dee Maness, Lloyd Green, Sneaky Pete Kleinow (pedal steel guitar); Alan Munde (banjo); Earl Ball, Bob Felts, Earl Ball, Leon Russell (piano); Steve Snyder (vibraphone); Chris Etheridge, Joe Osbourne, Roy M. Huskey, Emory Gordy (bass); Jon Corneal, Kevin Kelley, Eddie Hoh, Sam Goldstein, Thomas "Popeye" Phillips, Michael Clarke (drums); Linda Rondstadt (background vocals).
Producers include: Gram Parsons, Roy Halee, The Burritos, Jim Dickson, Henry Lewy.
Compilation producers: James Austin, Patrick Milligan, Gary Stewart.
Recorded between 1968 & 1976. Includes a 52-page booklet with photographs and liner notes by Holly George-Warren and Bud Scoppa.
Personnel: Gram Parsons (vocals, guitar, acoustic guitar, piano); Chris Hillman (vocals, guitar, mandolin); Barry Tashian, Bob Buchanan (vocals, guitar); Emmylou Harris (vocals, acoustic guitar, tambourine); Herb Pedersen (vocals, acoustic guitar); Chris Ethridge (vocals, piano); Jon Corneal (vocals, drums); Bernie Leadon (guitar, acoustic guitar, dobro); John Hartford (guitar, banjo); Clarence White, Donnie Owens, John Nuese, Jock Bartley (guitar); James Burton (electric guitar, dobro); Alan Munde (banjo); Byron Berline (mandolin, fiddle); Glen D. Hardin (piano, organ); Earl Ball, Leon Russell (piano); Steve Snyder (vibraphone); Sam Goldstein, Kevin Kelley , Fast Eddie Hoh, John Guerin, Michael Clarke , N.D. Smart II (drums); Mitch Gordon, Lewis Morford, Tom Bahler, Linda Ronstadt, Ron Hicklin (background vocals).
Audio Mixers: Emmylou Harris; Hugh Davies.
Audio Remasterers: Daniel Hersch; Bill Inglot.
Audio Remixer: Hugh Davies.
Liner Note Authors: Emmylou Harris; James Austin; Bud Scoppa; Holly George-Warren.
Recording information: A&M Studios, Hollywood, CA (07/12/1967-07/??/1973); Capital Records Studios, Hollywood, CA (07/12/1967-07/??/1973); Columbia Studios, Hollywood, CA, Nashville, TN (07/12/1967-07/??/1973); Ultra Sonic Recording Studios, Hempstead, NY (07/12/1967-07/??/1973); Wally Heider Studio 4, Hollywood, CA (07/12/1967-07/??/1973); Western Recorders, Studio 3, Hollywood, CA (07/12/1967-07/??/1973).
Photographers: Raeanne Rubenstein; Greg Allen .
Were it not for Gram Parsons and Emmylou Harris, the universally acknowledged king and queen of progressive country, countless young alt-counry bands would have never donned their faded Levi's and battered Telecasters in the first place, and even if they did, they'd surely sound a lot different. In 2001, the smart folks at Rhino Records saw fit to release comprehensive two-disc anthologies of both Harris and Parsons, highlighting the way the pair (separately and together) introduced post-Beatles folk and rock sensibilities into country and expanded it without diluting it.
This set chronicles the steps along Parson's path toward creating country-rock, from the hardcore honky-tonk of his International Submarine Band to his ground-breaking work with the Byrds and definitive country-rockers the Flying Burrito Brothers to his transcendent solo albums (where Harris proved a valuable vocal partner). While there's plenty of unadulterated country on this collection, it's the intersection between rock and country, an idea still fresh in its infancy, that is the pivot point here. Parsons's blend of drugged-out imagery, bluegrass fire-and-brimstone, and honky-tonk hell-raising informs tragedy ("$1000 Wedding"), reckless abandon ("Wheels"), piety ("In My Hour of Darkness"), and Americana narrative ("Return of the Grievous Angel") with equal aplomb.