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Compadres: An Anthology of Duets

Compadres: An Anthology of Duets

by Bob Dylan
The duet has a revered place in country music history, but in the variety of artists he elects to warble with, Marty Stuart has made the form an act of self-definition and self-revelation, while at the same time kicking ass and taking names. History shows that his partners on the other side of the mic know to bring their A games, too, resulting in the best duet


The duet has a revered place in country music history, but in the variety of artists he elects to warble with, Marty Stuart has made the form an act of self-definition and self-revelation, while at the same time kicking ass and taking names. History shows that his partners on the other side of the mic know to bring their A games, too, resulting in the best duet recordings of the past decade or so. This anthology, consisting of both previously issued and previously unreleased recordings, takes Stuart from a 15-year-old wunderkind mandolin picker up to the present day. We hear him storming through "Rawhide," following an introduction by Lester Flatt (with whom Stuart began his career at age 13) and offering a soul-deep exploration of Delta gospel in "Move Along Train," a cut from Stuart's powerful 2005 album Soul's Chapel, featuring a sultry Mavis Staples buttressing her male counterpart's bluesy exultation (Handsome Harry Stinson has a star turn, too, with an affecting high tenor lead). Familiar tracks include a touching, topical country blues with Merle Haggard on "Farmer's Blues," a rumbling, ramshackle "Doin' My Time" with former father-in-law Johnny Cash, and a grinding shuffle rendition of Jay McShann's "Confessin' the Blues," from B. B. King's Deuces Wild long-player. Other guests include George Jones, Travis Tritt (this anthology would be incomplete without "The Whiskey Ain't Workin'," one of the classic duet hits of the '90s), Del McCoury, and Mrs. Marty Stuart, the legendary Connie Smith, who reflects with her husband on the power of enduring love in the beautiful ballad "Hearts Like Ours." There are no throwaway tracks here -- Stuart's emotional commitment is gripping, and he makes every moment sound like something's at stake.

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Thom Jurek
Marty Stuart released a pair of very fine yet very different recordings in 2005. The first, Souls' Chapel, was an innovative yet rootsy country-gospel set. The second, Badlands: Ballads of the Lakota, was a heart-rending deeply soulful, and sometimes rocking album based on the proud heritage of the Indian-American (the politically correct term in 2007) and what has been lost to the rest of us as this tribe and all others have been decimated by the government sanctioned genocide of the Indian in the 18th, 19th, and early 20th centuries. Stuart issued a Live at the Ryman disc in 2006, and Compadres is a compilation, along with a pair of unreleased cuts, of Stuart's performances with fellow musicians from country, bluegrass, folk, and gospel musics, almost all of them legends. The unissued tracks are an interesting lot. First up is a beautiful honky tonk duet with Loretta Lynn called "Will You Visit Me on Sunday" (no year), written by the great Dallas Frazier. Both voices are in fine shape, and Lynn's emotive, pure, and classic country alto is just gorgeous. Next is a cover of Pete Townshend's "I Can See for Miles" with Old Crow Medicine Show and his own band the Superlatives. The track keeps its anthemic quality, even with bluegrass fiddle and mandolins ringing along with the acoustic guitars. The vocals are a little ragged and it doesn't quite work for inclusion on any other album, but it would have been a great live collaboration. Other tracks feature Stuart with Steve Earle on a blues rendition of Buddy Holly's "Crying, Waiting, Hoping" with a killer acoustic blues slide intro by Stuart before the rest of the band kicks in with Richard Bennett on electric guitar. This one, included from Not Fade Away from 1996, shows the re-emergence of Earle after a long struggle with his own demons. Stuart's electric slide work kicks butt, too. He re-creates the performances of the Band and the Staple Singers on Robbie Robertson's "The Weight," from the various-artists comp Rhythm Country and Blues from 1994 which paired performers from each genre; it's as stirring as anything he's ever recorded. Pops was still alive then (hearing him even now sends chills) and Mavis is in excellent voice (is she ever in anything else?). There's an interesting version of "Rawhide" with Lester Flatt -- Stuart was a member of his band as a teenager -- from a 1974 live album by Flatt, and a 1999 performance with Earl Scruggs from The Pilgrim. Stuart plays mandolin on both cuts. Other tracks include duets with B.B. King, Travis Tritt, Johnny Cash (from 1992 when he was Cash's son-in-law); current wife and country music legend Connie Smith, Merle Haggard, George Jones, Mavis Staples (on a killer read of a Pops Staples tune called "Move Along Train" from the Souls' Chapel disc) and Del McCoury. The Jones track "One Woman Man" (from 1994's Bradley Barn Sessions and written by Johnny Horton) is the only thing here that feels like it doesn't work at all, and sad to say, that has a lot more to do with Jones than Stuart. This is for the hardcore Marty Stuart fan no doubt. That said, it does reveal his tremendous versatility as an instrumentalist, song interpreter, and producer, and the eclectic, wide-ranging nature of his musical obsessions.

Product Details

Release Date:
Hip-O Records


Album Credits

Performance Credits

Marty Stuart   Primary Artist,Acoustic Guitar,Mandolin,Electric Guitar,Vocals,Slide Guitar
Jerry Douglas   Dobro
Lester Flatt   Guitar
Del McCoury   Acoustic Guitar
Earl Scruggs   Banjo
Ricky Skaggs   Fiddle,Vocal Harmony
Matt Rollings   Piano
Jim Keltner   Drums
Don Potter   Acoustic Guitar
Richard Rodney Bennett   Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar,Steel Guitar
Brian Ahern   Electric Guitar
Kenny Aronoff   Drums
Eddie Bayers   Drums
Barry Beckett   Piano,Hammond Organ
Mike Brignardello   Bass
Mike Bub   Bass
Larry Byrom   Acoustic Guitar
Terry Crisp   Steel Guitar
Chad Cromwell   Drums
Stuart Duncan   Fiddle
Tommy Eyre   Hammond Organ
Tony Harrell   Hammond Organ
Kevin Hayes   Banjo
James "Hutch" Hutchinson   Bass
B.B. King   Guitar
Dennis Locorriere   Vocal Harmony
Mac McAnally   Acoustic Guitar,Slide Guitar
Larry Marrs   Bass
Steve Nathan   Keyboards
Michael Rhodes   Bass
Hargus "Pig" Robbins   Piano
Jimmy Joe Ruggiere   Harmonica
Mavis Staples   Vocals
Harry Stinson   Drums,Vocals
Steve Turner   Drums
Robby Turner   Steel Guitar
Kenny Vaughan   Electric Guitar
Biff Watson   Guitar
Willie Weeks   Bass
Glenn Worf   Acoustic Bass
Johnny Montgomery   Bass
Kenny Ingram   Banjo
Billy Walker   Electric Guitar
Gary Hogue   Steel Guitar
Tim Passmore   Vocal Harmony
Stuart Smith   Electric Guitar
Steve Arnold   Bass
Brian Glenn   Bass,Vocals,Upright Bass
Willie Watson   Acoustic Guitar,Vocals
Critter Fuqua   Banjo
Morgan Jahnig   Upright Bass
Ketch Secor   Fiddle

Technical Credits

Little Walter   Composer
Earl Scruggs   Composer
Marty Stuart   Composer,Producer,Art Direction,Audio Production
Johnny Horton   Composer
Connie Smith   Composer
Buddy Holly   Composer
Robbie Robertson   Composer
Pete Townshend   Composer
Jay McShann   Composer
Jimmie Skinner   Composer
Roebuck "Pops" Staples   Composer
Richard Rodney Bennett   Producer
Brian Ahern   Producer
Gregg Brown   Producer
Tony Brown   Executive Producer
Blake Chancey   Executive Producer
Peter Coleman   Engineer
Donivan Cowart   Engineer
Gene Eichelberger   overdub engineer
Bob Ferguson   Producer
Dallas Frazier   Composer
Chris Hammond   Engineer
Steve Holroyd   Engineer
Carl Jackson   Producer,Executive Producer
Ira Louvin   Composer
Charlie Louvin   Composer
Joe McGrath   Engineer
Justin Niebank   Producer,Engineer
Warren Peterson   Engineer,overdub engineer
John Porter   Producer
Ronny Scaife   Composer
Chuck Seitz   Engineer
Steve Tillisch   overdub engineer
Don Was   Producer
Mark Wright   Executive Producer
Ron Black   Engineer
Drew Bollman   Engineer
Chuck Ainlay   Engineer
Tillman Franks   Composer
Kathy Nelson   Executive Producer
Geoffrey Himes   Liner Notes
Karen Cronin   Art Direction
Teller   Executive Producer
Jamie Tate   Engineer
Kathy Louvin   Executive Producer
Frank Liddell   Executive Producer
Luke Wooten   Engineer
Chuck Turner   Engineer,overdub engineer
Joey Turner   Engineer,overdub engineer
Bruce Hinton   Executive Producer
Marc Dottore   Management

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