In this week's episode, we're featuring Marty Robbins' third album (of four) for MCA Records: "Good 'N Country" (1974). After twenty years, Columbia Records and Robbins parted ways, and in the singer's own words: "I was just like a small fish in a big pond and it seemed like a good time to move on." He was soon on the roster at MCA, searching for a new direction. Marty Robbins truly was a musical chameleon - from Hawaiian love songs to western story songs, crooner through to hard country genius - Robbins could sing it all. And in the search for a new direction, he called banjo picker Haskel McCormick into a Wednesday night session and joined with Buddy Spicher on fiddle and Bill Johnson utilising a rare fuzzbox effect on his steel guitar - he cut "Twentieth Century Drifter". A relative hit for the smooth singing Arizonian, it became a somewhat of a theme song for Robbins, who made over thirty starts in NASCAR's top division. The bluegrass overtones of "Good 'N Country" resulted in relative sales success but by 1975, Robbins was back at Columbia and remained there for the rest of his career. Highlights are plentiful: Robbins dug into the archives for a version of Eddy Arnold's "I Couldn't Believe It Was True"; a pair of self-penned songs from a prison-themed album that never enventuated in "Georgia Blood" and "Mother Knows Best" and a glorious steel guitar part in "You're An Angel Disguised As A Girl". Dang good stuff.
- If That Ain't Country
- Marty Robbins - Good 'N Country
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