The Latin Sound of Henry Mancini
While Hank is of course the man (“Peter Gunn,” “Pink Panther,” “Moon River”….), unless you’re a huge fan of commercial orchestra music, you might as well leave most of his albums in the bin at the thrift store where you found them, but if you’re a fan of Latin lounge, this one is worth grabbing.
Produced by Bob Ferguson
***** Good Shit
While some of her female contemporaries might be more well known, Connie could easily stand next to any of them, as this debut album surely shows.
Bill Anderson is credited on nearly half of the selections, the other songs credited to a variety of other songwriters: Betty Sue Perry, William B. Morgan, Baker Knight, Hank Cochran, and Willie Nelson. All of the cuts are good, and the majority are great.
Ferguson’s production is a wonderful balance of just enough but not too much, and the same can be said about the band’s contributions. Smith’s beautiful voice is wisely the center of all the songs, but the involvement of others help make this such a classic. She’s the statue, and the others rise her up and provide the lighting to accent her beauty. This is a work of art built to last.
Any respectable fan of hillbilly music, should give this set a spin. If you’re looking for a place to begin with this artist, you just found it.
— winch (author of Junk Like That and Kalamazoo: Growing Up Sideways in the 1970s)
Good Shit *****
First U.S. release by this folk guitarist from Scotland, half of the selections from Bert Jansch(1965), the others from It Don’t Bother Me (1965), this collection alternating between vocal cuts and acoustic guitar solos, the latter especially strong but the vocal cuts powerful as well, some of them strong enough to put a chill to your bones.
The cautionary tale “Needle of Death,” is as poignant as any drug song, ranks up there with Lou Reed’s song about the same subject matter, this one in sharp contrast to the celebratory drug songs of the 60s. Other highlights include the traveling tales “Running From Home” and “Rambling’s Gonna Be the Death of Me.”
While the selections come from two albums, they fit together like cars in a freight train, the instrumentals chiming like chains, the sequencing creating a musical journey, a train ride through various landscapes, occasionally slowing down to gaze at people along the way.
This clearly influenced much of the music that followed, not just folk singers but rock artists as well. It puts most of the competition to shame.
s e l e c t i v e
(selected by winch)
“Say It Again” (Simpson/Ashford/Armstead)
“That’s No Way To Treat a Girl” (Elgin/Millrose/Bruno/Sping)
Marie Knight (New York) Musicor (1106) 1965
“I Can Never Go Home Anymore” (George Morton)
The Shangri-Las (Queens) Redbird 1965
“Take a Look Around You” (B. Jerome, M. Aiese)
Reparata and the Delrons RCA Victor (47-8721) 1965
“Downtown” (Tony Hatch)
“(There’s) Always Something There To Remind Me”
“Girl Don’t Come” (Chris Andrews)
“Baby I Need Your Lovin’” (Holland/Dozier)
“Gotta See My Baby Every Day” (Chris Andrews)
Sandie Shaw (England) Sandie Shaw Reprise (6166) 1965
“What’d I Say” (Ray Charles)
Three Blonde Mice Atco (6353B) 1965
“Darling Baby” (Holland/Dozier/Holland)
“Put Yourself In My Place” (Holland/Dozier/Holland)
The Elgins (Detroit) V.I.P. (25029) 1965
“Yes, I’m Ready” (B. Mason)
Barbara Mason (Philadelphia) Arctic (105A) 1965
“A Lover’s Concerto” (Linzer/Randell)
The Toys (New York) DynoVoice (209A) 1965