Loudon Wainwright III High Wide & Handsome - The Charlie Poole Project [Import]
Out of Print: Future availability is unknown
- by Rosanne Cash ~ The List ~ $17.08
- Released: August 17, 2009
Rolling Stone - p.843.5 stars out of 5 -- "Wainwright's sprawling family add clever harmonies to songs about marriage, booze and rabble-rousing."
Record Collector (magazine) - p.995 stars out of 5 -- "Wainwright and his producer Dick Connette keep things flowing with arrangements that run from solo voice to string backing and, naturally, the banjo features prominently."
Tracks on Disc 1:
- 1.High Wide & Handsome
- 2.Took My Gal Out Walkin'
- 3.I'm the Man Who Rode the Mule Around the World
- 4.My Mother and My Sweetheart
- 5.Bill Mason's Bride
- 6.Goodbye Booze
- 7.Old Ballyhoo
- 8.Little Waterloo
- 9.I'm Glad I'm Married
- 10.Mother's Last Farewell Kiss
- 11.Acres of Diamonds
- 12.Way Up in Nyc
- 13.If I Lose
- 14.The Great Reaping Day
- 15.Where the Whippoorwill Is Whispering Goodnight
Tracks on Disc 2:
- 1.The Man in the Moon
- 2.The Deal
- 3.No Knees
- 4.Moving Day
- 5.Old and Only in the Way
- 6.Ragtime Annie
- 7.Sweet Sunny South
- 8.The Letter That Never Came
- 9.Awful Hungry Hash House
- 11.Didn't He Ramble
- 12.Ramblin' Blues
- 13.Charlie's Last Song
- 15.High Wide & Handsome (Reprise)
Charlie Poole (1892-1931) was a hard-living, plain-singing, banjo-picking raconteur, amateur baseball player, mill worker, boozer, and bootlegger whose name may not be as well known as, say, Jimmie Rodgers or the Carter Family, but who nonetheless helped define what country music later became. Loudon Wainwright built this album around both old songs associated with Poole and new ones that help move the Poole story forward for today's world. Poole was not primarily a songwriter; he took what he heard elsewhere and bent it to his will. But he had an inimitable populist style, a whole lot of attitude and charisma, and the kind of sly humor that a sly humorist like Wainwright certainly can embrace. Of the 30 tracks spread across these two discs, all but nine were found among Poole's own, relatively small catalog. Without attempting to replicate the acoustic string band sound of the '20s and early '30s, Wainwright gets to the heart of songs such as "I'm the Man Who Rode the Mule Around the World," "Moving Day" (with the Roches on background vocals), "The Letter That Never Came," and "Mother's Last Farewell Kiss," tunes that Poole waxed and which, in the hands of Wainwright, manage to open a window into the Depression-era life while remaining viable to contemporary ears. Loudon's new songs are intended not so much to conform to Poole's style (although they do that, too) as to embellish upon it.
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