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- Released: April 29, 1997
- Originally Released: 1997
- Label: Sbme Special Mkts.
- 1.A Satisfied Mind [2:47]
- 2.Company's Comin' [2:42]
- 3.Eat, Drink and Be Merry (Tomorow You'll Cry) [2:19]
- 4.What Would You Do (If Jesus Came to Your House) [2:42]
- 5.Tryin' to Forget the Blues [2:03]
- 6.I Thought I Heard You Calling My Name [2:38]
- 7.Your Old Love Letters [2:13]
- 8.Misery Loves Company [2:34]
- 9.I've Enjoyed As Much of This As I Can Stand [2:40]
- 10.Sorrow on the Rocks [2:00]
- 11.Green, Green Grass of Home [2:21]
- 12.I'll Go Down Swinging [2:24]
- 13.Skid Row Joe [3:01]
- 14.The Cold Hard Facts of Life [3:11]
- 15.The Carroll County Accident [2:49]
- 16.Big Wind [2:15]
- 17.The Last One to Touch Me [3:01]
- 18.What Ain't to Be, Just Might Happen [2:09]
- 19.Highway Headin' South [2:06]
- 20.I Haven't Learned a Thing with Guest Vocalist Merle Haggard [3:59]
Personnel includes: Porter Wagoner, Merle Haggard.
All tracks have been digitally remastered.
This is part of RCA Nashville's Essentials series.
True to its title, this is an excellent, comprehensive introduction to the work of this important country music figure. The disc opens with a humble take on "A Satisfied Mind" that shows Wagoner's roots in bluegrass and gospel. In short order, though, we're treated to the rollicking, honky-tonk side of Wagoner, as he revels in the joys of drink as heartache antidote on "Eat, Drink and be Merry (for Tomorrow You'll Cry)" and I'll Go Down Swinging."
Throughout much of his early career, Wagoner was heavily influenced by Hank Williams, but by the mid-to-late 1960s, he came fully into his own as a musical storyteller. The grim murder ballad "The Cold Hard Facts of Life," one of his finest moments, still sounds just as stirring and unsettling decades later, and the complex narrative of "Carroll County Incident" is in a class with Tom T. Hall. Even in the '70s, Wagoner was mixing downhome sentiments with baleful moodiness, as on the disc-closer "I Haven't Learned a Thing," which brings things full circle.
- Sales Rank: 12,170
- UPC: 886919855326
- Shipping Weight: 0.25/lbs (approx)
- International Shipping: 1 item
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