Various - Choctaw Ridge - New Fables of The American South 1968-1973

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Choctaw Ridge explores a new country sound, one that emerged at the end of the 60s in the wake of Bobbie Gentry’s ‘Ode To Billie Joe’, a shock number one hit in 1967. When singers like Gentry, Jimmy Webb, Michael Nesmith and Lee Hazlewood moved from the south to Los Angeles to make it in the music business, they were not part of the Nashville in-crowd and they forged a new direction. The tracklist and fulsome sleeve notes have been put together by Bob Stanley (Saint Etienne) and Martin Green (Smashing, The Sound Gallery), who have been collecting these records for decades.

The voices are resonant and relatable, and the productions take in the best of what pop had to offer in the late 60s and early 70s. Before the factionalism between smooth pop-conscious Nashville and the hedonistic ‘outlaws’ made it look inward again, this was a golden era for an atmospheric, inclusive and progressive country music. It began on the third of June, another sleepy, dusty Delta day.

01 The House Song - Lee Hazlewood 02 If Only She Had Stayed - Chris Gantry 03 Endless Miles Of Highway - Jerry Reed 04 The Back Side Of Dallas - Jeannie C Riley 05 Way Before The Time Of Towns - Hoyt Axton 06 Strawberry Farms - Tom T Hall 07 Down From Dover - Dolly Parton 08 July 12, 1939 - Charlie Rich 09 What Am I Doing In LA? - Nat Stuckey 10 Mr Stanton Don't Believe It - Rob Galbraith 11 Saunders' Ferry Lane - Sammi Smith 12 Four Shades Of Love - Henson Cargill 13 Drivin' Nails In The Wall - Waylon Jennings & The Kimberlys 14 Ruby, Don't Take Your Love To Town - Kenny Rogers & The First Edition 15 Why Can't I Come Home - Ed Bruce 16 Mr Walker, It's All Over - Billie Jo Spears 17 Harlan County - Jim Ford 18 Widow Wimberly - Tony Joe White 19 Belinda (Alt take) - Bobbie Gentry 20 Joanne - Michael Nesmith & The First National Band 21 Mr Jackson's Got Nothing To Do - John Hartford 22 Alone - Lee Hazlewood & Suzi Jane Hokom 23 Fabulous Body And Smile - Sir Robert Charles Griggs 24 I Feel Like Going Home - Charlie Rich