Essential Ricky Skaggs

The Essential Ricky Skaggs

by Ricky Skaggs
     
 

View All Available Formats & Editions

After starting his career as a bluegrass phenom, Ricky Skaggs signed with Epic in 1981 and promptly joined George Strait in leading the New Traditionalists who were infusing country music with an updated approach beholden to fundamental styles. Hearing Skaggs in his mainstream prime on The Essential Ricky Skaggs, which covers the…  See more details below

Overview

After starting his career as a bluegrass phenom, Ricky Skaggs signed with Epic in 1981 and promptly joined George Strait in leading the New Traditionalists who were infusing country music with an updated approach beholden to fundamental styles. Hearing Skaggs in his mainstream prime on The Essential Ricky Skaggs, which covers the years 1981 to 1991, is to hear an artist who remained true to the music on which he had cut his teeth, while seamlessly integrating electric guitars and drums into a mix otherwise dominated by acoustic string instruments and steel guitar. The only fusion going on here is between country, honky-tonk, and bluegrass -- no mealy-mouthed country-pop, no orchestra-laden power ballads co-opted from arena rock. There are, however, songs by the likes of Flatt & Scruggs, Mel Tillis, Guy Clark, Don Everly, and Stonewall Jackson, among others. "Crying My Heart Out Over You" demonstrates Skaggs's affinity for pure heartbreak in a western swing mode. On Everly's "I Wonder If I Care as Much," sibling harmonies are supplanted by keening, high lonesome bluegrass harmonies and honky-tonk blues. The homespun philosophy of Larry Cordle's "You Can't Do Wrong and Get By" is set to a shuffling, steel- and fiddle-rich honky-tonk arrangement, spiked by some piano fills, that brings out the most emotive side of that unreconstructed honky-tonker George Jones, who joins Skaggs for a deeply felt duet. But for the drums and a lively piano solo, a bouncy treatment of Flatt & Scruggs' "Don't Get Above Your Raisin'" is a bluegrass hoedown. There's too much great work from these years to be contained on a single disc, but as a taste, The Essential is quite savory indeed.

Read More

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Steve Leggett
Ricky Skaggs has done a little bit of everything during his long career, from traditional bluegrass to old-school country to newgrass, pop-country, and gospel, and yet somehow it has always seemed like a single thread, emerging as Skaggs' own sturdy brand of country roots music. He hasn't so much changed with the times as the times have changed on him, and he's taken that opportunity to pretty much do whatever he wants to do, exploring the different avenues of country music with a focus and vision that don't require him to deliver radio hits one after the other, because he's done that. Between 1981 and 1991, while he was signed to Epic Records, Skaggs placed 31 singles on the country charts, and 25 of those hit the Top 20, all of which made him a huge star. In many ways, he was a transitional figure between modern traditional country and bluegrass and the soon-to-emerge contemporary country brand. This two-disc, 32-track set collects the best of Skaggs' sides during those commercial glory years at Epic, and includes the hits "Crying My Heart Out Over You," "I Don't Care," "Heartbroke," "I Wouldn't Change You If I Could," and "Highway 40 Blues," among many others, all affording proof that country doesn't need fancy videos, alternative guitar riffs, and studio gimmicks to be relevant in any century.

Product Details

Release Date:
04/01/2003
Label:
Sony
UPC:
0696998906822
catalogNumber:
89068

Tracks

Read More

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Ricky Skaggs   Primary Artist,Acoustic Guitar,Fiddle,Mandolin,Electric Guitar
Jerry Douglas   Dobro
Ray Flacke   Electric Guitar
Albert Lee   Electric Guitar
Steve Gibson   Mandolin,Electric Guitar
Lloyd Green   Steel Guitar
Buck White   Piano,Soloist,Fills
Eddie Bayers   Drums
Barry Beckett   Piano
Bruce Bouton   Steel Guitar
Dennis Burnside   Piano
Mark Casstevens   Acoustic Guitar
Jesse Chambers   Bass
Terry Crisp   Steel Guitar
Glen D. Hardin   Piano
Hank DeVito   Rhythm Guitar,Steel Guitar
Emory Gordy   Bass
George Grantham   Background Vocals
Bobby Hardin   Background Vocals
Bobby Hicks   Fiddle
David Hungate   Bass
Roy M. "Junior" Husky   Upright Bass
Jerry Kroon   Drums
Kenny Malone   Percussion,Drums
Mickey Merritt   Piano
Weldon Myrick   Steel Guitar
John Ware   Drums
Cheryl Warren   Background Vocals
Michael Rojas   Piano
Rodney Price   Drums
Joe Osborn   Bass
Mike Kennedy   Drums

Technical Credits

Lester Flatt   Composer
Earl Scruggs   Composer
Ricky Skaggs   Producer
Guy Clark   Composer
Ray Pennington   Composer
Ray Price   Composer
Mel Tillis   Composer
Don Everly   Composer
Cindy Walker   Composer
Jim Eanes   Composer
Carl Butler   Composer
Larry Cordle   Composer
Melvin Endsley   Composer
Shake Russell   Composer
Jim Bessman   Liner Notes
Steve Buckingham   Producer
Paul Jones   Composer
Hillary Kanter   Composer
Webb Pierce   Composer
Billy Sherrill   Producer
Even Stevens   Composer
Marijohn Wilkin   Composer
Arthur Q. Smith   Composer
Jim Rushing   Composer
S. Jackson   Composer
Roy Marcum   Composer
Gladys Stacey   Composer
Louise Certain   Composer
Traditional   Composer
Arthur Smith   Composer
Tom Uhr   Composer

Read More

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >