Woody Guthrie and Songs of My Oklahoma Home

Woody Guthrie and Songs of My Oklahoma Home

by James Talley
     
 
If you get out of America's great urban centers and travel across country on its blue highways, you'll recognize the scenes James Talley sings of on WOODY GUTHRIE AND SONGS OF MY OKLAHOMA HOME. Woody created James Talley: a hardworking, decent man trying to make an honest stand who has the misfortune to learn that they'll rob you with a fountain pen as surely as they

Overview

If you get out of America's great urban centers and travel across country on its blue highways, you'll recognize the scenes James Talley sings of on WOODY GUTHRIE AND SONGS OF MY OKLAHOMA HOME. Woody created James Talley: a hardworking, decent man trying to make an honest stand who has the misfortune to learn that they'll rob you with a fountain pen as surely as they will with a six-gun. In the late '70s, Talley broke through the country scene with stark, resonant, traditional country music that won him critical plaudits and an invite to Jimmy Carter's 1977 Presidential Inauguration. Shortly thereafter, Talley was chewed up in the music industry meat grinder and bowed out. But he never stopped writing and recording, and these news reports -- you won't hear on the networks or read in the papers and magazines -- remind us why he's important. Talley relates them in a relaxed voice, dry and evocative, twisting phrases to drive home the message, and the artist's barely contained sense of outrage comes through with subtle authority. It's important, as the new millennium dawns, to hear "I Ain't Got No Home," "Deportee," "Pastures of Plenty," and the unexpurgated "This Land Is Your Land." Woody's songs keep showing up, proving their timelessness and timeliness, but Talley stands alone among latter-day interpreters. He knows this turf, to the bone and through the bone, and when he sings, these tales come alive again. Sometimes vividly, heartbreakingly alive.

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Bruce Eder
Oklahoma-born James Talley gives stirring accounts of most of the 21 Woody Guthrie songs on this 70-minute CD. Richard Hardy's mandolin adds considerable color to the timbre of these well-arranged recordings, which are dominated by Talley's suitably emotive and pleasing voice. Talley evidently identifies deeply with much of this repertory and invests a lot of himself in each piece, and the backup singing melds nicely with his lead vocals. The recording quality is exceptionally good, bringing out the delicate timbre of the playing, and only the availability of Guthrie's versions (and those by contemporaries such as Pete Seeger) makes this a less-than-obvious choice, though it is an excellent assembly of many of the composer's most famous songs (with "Goodnight Irene" used as the music for the poem "Red Wing," and the Jack Guthrie co-authored "Oklahoma Hills" also present).

Product Details

Release Date:
01/04/2000
Label:
Cimarron Records
UPC:
0693249100923
catalogNumber:
1009

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