Blackland Farmer: The Complete Starday Recordings

Blackland Farmer: The Complete Starday Recordings

by Frankie Miller


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Blackland Farmer: The Complete Starday Recordings

Good-natured and unassuming, and possessing an easy, slightly raspy baritone voice that brought an everyman feel to everything he sang, Frankie Miller ought to be a household name in country circles, but he isn't, and his relative obscurity as the 21st century opens is as much a mystery as it is unforgivable. Although he recorded often, Miller's key years were with Don Pierce's Starday label out of Nashville in the late '50s and early '60s (roughly 1959 to 1963), the time period covered by this marvelous three-disc anthology from Bear Family Records. With the usual Bear Family precision, this set includes both sides of the 17 singles Miller released with Starday, his three solo LPs with the label, his complete gospel EP, his pre-Starday single from Cowtown Hoedown, several sides he recorded with United Artists in 1962 and with Pete Drake's Stop label in 1966, plus previously unissued tracks, demos, and live performances, making this package a bonanza for Miller fans and collectors. Miller's easygoing, unhurried style makes everything go down as natural as a feather, and that steadiness makes him seem like everyone's likable neighbor, whether he is flirting with honky tonk or edging around the margins of rockabilly, and it's impossible, if you give him a chance, not to like this guy. Miller's most striking recording, and his signature song, is his own "Blackland Farmer," a track he originally recorded in 1956 but which sat unreleased until 1959 when Starday took a chance on it. "Blackland Farmer," marked by its distinctive percussion track, which mimicked the sound of a horse walking on hard ground, consequently shot to the top of the country charts, and the sparse, folky arrangement and Miller's simple, sincere singing make it sound surprisingly fresh some 50 years later. Miller had a second Top Ten country hit in 1959 with the sturdy "Family Man," but that was to be his commercial peak and while he continued to put out quality work, country music seemed to pass him by, eventually relegating him to footnote status, a neglect that seems downright criminal. Hopefully this generous, comfortable, and detailed set will help address the situation and bring Miller the contemporary attention he deserves.

Product Details

Release Date: 03/11/2011
Label: Bear Family
UPC: 4000127165664
catalogNumber: 16566
Rank: 111363


Disc 1

  1. Blackland Farmer
  2. True Blue
  3. Poppin' Johnny
  4. Family Man
  5. The Money Side of Life
  6. Reunion
  7. Baby Rocked Her Dolly
  8. Rain, Rain
  9. Strictly Nuthin'
  10. Young Widow Brown
  11. Two Lips Away
  12. Out of Bounds
  13. I'll Write to You
  14. Richest Poor Boy
  15. Lookin' Around Downtown
  16. A Little Bit's Better (Then Nothing at All)
  17. The Cat and the Mouse
  18. It's Not Easy
  19. Losing Again
  20. If I'd Known Then
  21. Just for You
  22. Prison Grey
  23. Tornado
  24. Big Talk of the Town
  25. Reunion
  26. Baby Rocked Her Dolly
  27. Rain, Rain
  28. The Cat and the Mouse
  29. Faded Bible
  30. Who Do You Think
  31. Trust the Saviour
  32. Valley of Death
  33. Family Bible

Disc 2

  1. Gotta Win My Baby Back
  2. The Picture at St. Helene
  3. Losing by a Hair
  4. I Miss Her Every Way
  5. One Excuse Is as Good as Another
  6. The Party's Over
  7. Too Hot to Handle
  8. A Little South of Memphis
  9. Fifteen Acres of Peanut Land
  10. Out of This World
  11. Mean Old Greyhound Bus
  12. It Took a Lot of Love to Let Her Go
  13. Starving for Love
  14. I Can Almost Forget
  15. Big Talk of the Town
  16. Truck Driving Buddy
  17. Bringing Mary Home
  18. Country Music Who's Who
  19. A Tough Row to Hoe
  20. Charlie's Got a Good Thing Going
  21. She's My Antibiotic (In White)
  22. Fickle Hand of Fate
  23. True Love Stays
  24. Starving for Love
  25. Maybe You Would Love Me Then
  26. It Took a Lot of Love to Let Her Go
  27. Pain
  28. I Put the Blue in Her Eyes
  29. Wrong Side of the Tracks
  30. World War III

Disc 3

  1. Just for Spite
  2. Give a Purpose to My Love
  3. I Should Be
  4. Don't Make Me Miss You
  5. Impersonations/Always Late/Lord Gave Me Help/I Walk the Line
  6. Katy Malone
  7. It's Not Easy
  8. Peppermint Candy
  9. Family Man
  10. Blues of Yesterday
  11. I Remember Dad
  12. House Down the Road
  13. A Little South of Memphis
  14. I'd Rather Have You
  15. Tears of Time
  16. Funny Way of Lovin'
  17. Let's Forget It
  18. Fall of the Alamo
  19. I'll Get Over You (Still Keep Hoping)
  20. A Tough Row to Hoe
  21. The Wagon Yard
  22. Out of This World
  23. She Put the Misery on Me
  24. Lonesome Time
  25. Keeping Up with the Jones
  26. Nothing at All
  27. Two Lips Away
  28. Blackland Farmer
  29. Conversations with Hank Davis: Meeting Elvis at the Hayride
  30. Conversations with Hank Davis: Memories of Tommy Hill
  31. Conversations with Hank Davis: Creating Hoofbeats
  32. Conversations with Hank Davis: The Blackland Farmer Tape
  33. Conversations with Hank Davis: Headlining a Rock Show

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