Greg Kurcewicz on Country and Western music on YouTube
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Greg Kurcewicz on Country and Western music on YouTube

Waylon Jennings on YouTube

Waylon Jennings on YouTube

My 7 wonders are all to do with Country and Western, a genre of music that I have begun to explore more of over the last few years. I vividly remember one afternoon as a snotty teenager where an enthusiastic friend tried to convince me of the virtues and wonders of  Country at the altar of his bedroom record player. He had them all – Waylon, The Eagles (all of their damned LPs), Hank Williams, Johnny Cash, Rita Coolidge, you name it (and posters from “Country Music Monthly”)… He failed to convince me that it was a worthy pursuit – I was deep into the Velvet Underground and regarded this genre as awful, and stared politely at my black buckled boots whilst nodding faint approval and trying not to look too bored.. Oh how I wish now that I had taken heed that afternoon…

1 & 2. Waylon Jennings

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First up we have Waylon Jennings. Or Waylon. First name terms for the devotees please.

Waylon singing “Lonesome On’ry and Mean” – what a band! And “Hoss” can play that telecaster too! (Through his great trademark phaser pedal) Please don’t confuse him with Boxcar Willie – that’s what turned you off country when you saw him on Pebble Mill at One as a child.

I have to put two Waylon wonders in here so you can understand him a little more:

Here he is as a younger man, he has a face for the cinema (and indeed did star in films).

He’s singing “Mental Revenge” on some TV programme in 1966. What a title! Eat your heart out Nick Cave.

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3. George Jones

GEORGE JONES – Shine On

Jeremy | MySpace Video

One of the things I love about YouTube is the way people play their old LPs on camera. Some people get it out of the sleeve, switch on player and give an intro. This is my favourite format: The shrine…

4. Lefty Frizzell

And if you’re wondering where Bob Dylan found his voice for Nashville Skyline – here’s Lefty Frizzell with one of his best:

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5. Merle Haggard

Here’s the truth – I had to entertain world renouned conceptual artist Dan Graham one afternoon and he turned me on to “The Hag”  – Merle Haggard to you. He also wrote “Okie from Muskogee”.  Didn’t know what I’d bin missin’…

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6. Don Rich

It’s been said that a lot of America’s youth felt alienated but country music once Buck Owens started doing his “dumb”  weekly  show on Network TV in the late 60s. Now those “issues” have been played out ,surely we can revel in the baroque splendour of it all.  Here’s Owens’ guitarist Don Rich and band knocking out a great version of “Buckaroo”, the show’s signature tune  (Love the shot of the drummer).

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7. Ronee Blakley

Finally, Here’s  a real wonder: Ronee Blakley, one time Bob Dylan protégé (Renaldo and Clara) and Robert Altman’s “Nashville” star.

She should have been huge!  Such Country/MOR crossover potential!

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  1. Jo Ann Kaplan says:

    F-A-B! Especially Ronee.


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