Postings have been slow going here at Ranch Twang. The holidays have me running like a headless chicken and my trips to Washington DC on my solid-gold private plane to ask for a bail out. Since I’m the only employee of Ranch Twang I’m none too happy about my audacious behavior while my job hangs in the balance. That check better be in the mail or Christmas presents are going to be as rare as hen’s teeth. But of the bail-out..er..rescue comes in time here, dear Twangers, is my shopping list:
At Folsom Prison Legacy Edition – Johnny Cash’s 1968 watershed concert is given the Legacy treatment with the inclusion of both of the days performances, One show at 9:40 in the morning and another at 12:40 in the afternoon – the first show was exclusively used for the official record. The performance was like an old-style showcase and all the performers are present – Carl Perkins, the Statler Brothers, Radio DJ Hugh Cherry and the Carter family. Also included is a documentary DVD featuring interviews with Roseanne Cash, Merle Haggard, Marty Stuart, and several former inmates who attended the famed concert.
Merle Haggard: Legendary Performances – A Shout! Factory and the Country Music Hall Of Fame produced DVD of many of the Hag’s vintage live performances such as “Branded Man” (Country Music Holiday,1968), “Mama Tried” (Billy Walker’s Country Carnival, 1968) and “Okie From Muskogee” (The Porter Wagoner Show, 1970).
Country Music: The Masters by Marty Stuart – A breathtaking scrapbook by singer/songwriter/musician and country music historian Marty Stuart has created the closest thing to pressing the wild and beautiful soul of country music between two covers – Merle Haggard, Johnny Cash, Bill Monroe and more are candidly featured in Stuart’s own photos that span his 40 year career. The book somes with a CD including the song “Dark Bird,” an unreleased cut dedicated to Johnny Cash and written by Stuart after Cash’s death. There’s also a nice introduction from Boxmaster’s front man and actor Billy Bob Thornton.
Classic Christmas by George Strait – Who better to deliver your yule tides then the man with the pipes that could wrench away Bing Crosby’s hold as the voice of Christmas? “We Three Kings,” a playful “Up on the Housetop,” classics like “Hark, The Herald Angels Sing,” “Deck the Halls,” “O Come, All Ye Faithful,” and “We Wish You A Merry Christmas.” Aa great album to listen to by the fire while putting a little whiskey in your egg nog.
And last, but certainly not least, premier roots and alt.country record labels Bloodshot Records (Justin Townes Earle, Ryan Adams, tge Old 97s) and Hyena Records (Dale Watson, Grayson Capps) and legendary alt.country/roots magazine (now web site) No Depression are all having a blowout holiday sale. Go clean ‘em out!
For all of you on the naughty list, look for the full Rascall Flatts catalogue in your stocking.