Merle Haggard - The Bluegrass Sessions
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Merle Haggard - The Bluegrass Sessions

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Item #: 10825570
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    Personnel: Carl Jackson (tenor, guitar, background vocals); Alison Krauss (baritone); Rob Ickes (resonator guitar); Charlie Cushman (banjo); Marty Stuart (mandolin); Scott Joss, Aubrey Haynie (fiddle); Colonel J.D. Wilkes (harmonica); Ben Isaacs (uprig......more

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Artist: Haggard, Merle
Personnel: Carl Jackson (tenor, guitar, background vocals); Alison Krauss (baritone); Rob Ickes (resonator guitar); Charlie Cushman (banjo); Marty Stuart (mandolin); Scott Joss, Aubrey Haynie (fiddle); Colonel J.D. Wilkes (harmonica); Ben Isaacs (upright bass). It should not be assumed from the album title that THE BLUEGRASS SESSIONS finds honky-tonk hero Merle Haggard making like a modern-day Bill Monroe. His actual style alters little here, as he winds his way through new versions of some of his classic tunes ("Mama's Hungry Eyes," "Big City," etc.) and reinterprets material by his own heroes (the Delmore Brothers, Jimmie Rodgers). The "bluegrass" comes largely from the fact that he's joined here by such notables as Alison Krauss and fiddler nonpareil Aubrey Haynie, who frame the songs with pickin'-and-sawin', all-acoustic arrangements that re-contextualize the tunes, moving them handily from the honky tonk to the back porch. Hardline purists of both the Hag and bluegrass camps might be taken aback, but any country fan with ears will recognize the rightness of the end result.
See Also:
If I Could Only Fly, Mama Tried, Swinging Doors and The Bottle Let Me Down, The Lonesome Fugitive: The Merle Haggard Anthology (1963-1977), 40 #1 Hits, Same Train, A Different Time, Sing Me Back Home, Hag: The Best of Merle Haggard
See Influences:
Tommy Collins, Jimmy Work, Ernest Tubb, Woody Guthrie, Emmett Miller (Country), Jimmie Rodgers (Country), Faron Young, Johnny Cash, Ray Price, Floyd Tillman, Lefty Frizzell, Hank Thompson, Hank Williams, Bob Wills, Roy Acuff, Elvis Presley, Hank Snow
See Contemporaries:
Willie Nelson, Carl Butler, David Allan Coe, Harlan Howard, Buck Owens, Emmylou Harris, Garth Brooks, Tammy Wynette, Dwight Yoakam, Conway Twitty, Waylon Jennings, The Flying Burrito Brothers, Dallas Frazier, Bobby Bare, Townes Van Zandt, Hoyt Axton, Dolly Parton, Gene Watson, Bonnie Owens, Kris Kristofferson, Ray Price, Scott Joss, Moe Bandy, Hank Thompson, Faron Young, James Burton, Don Rich, Wynn Stewart, Randy Travis (Country), Tom T. Hall, Gram Parsons, Dick Curless, Leona Williams, David Ball, Johnny Paycheck, Charley Pride, Clint Black, Stoney Edwards, George Jones, Charlie Rich, Roger Miller (Country), Bobby Austin, George Strait, Marty Robbins
Track Listing:
Disc 1:
  1. 1 Runaway Mama
  2. 2 Pray
  3. 3 What Happened?
  4. 4 Jimmie Rodgers Blues Medley
  5. 5 Learning to Live With Myself
  6. 6 Mama's Hungry Eyes
  7. 7 I Wonder Where I'll Find You at Tonight
  8. 8 Holding Things Together
  9. 9 Big City
  10. 10 Momma's Prayers
  11. 11 Wouldn't That Be Something
  12. 12 Blues Stay Away From Me
McCoury Music
Ronnie Reno; Carl Jackson
Number of Discs:
Compact Disc
Studio or Live:
Mono or Stereo:
SPARS Coding:
43 : 45
Editorial Reviews:
Entertainment Weekly (p.126) - "[T]he main draw is several newly penned tunes from country's greatest songwriter..." Uncut (p.94) - 4 stars out of 5 -- "[The album] finds the chiselled country vet extending his string of good-to-great efforts this decade. Faith, populism, and the blues inform this one." Dirty Linen (p.80) - "THE BLUEGRASS SESSIONS finds him right at home in his collaboration with bluegrass royalty....The album includes heartfelt, bluesy covers of some of Hag's big hits..." No Depression (p.93) - "The results rank with his best, whether he's reviving 'Mama's Hungry Eyes' and 'big City', introducing 'Pray and 'What Happened?', or paying tribute to Jimmie Rogers and the Delmore Brothers."
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