CD Dim Lights, Thick Smoke and Hillbilly Music: 1951 (CD 6264180), Audio Other
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Dim Lights, Thick Smoke and Hillbilly Music: 1951


  • 1. Shot Gun Boogie, The
    2. Rotation Blues
    3. Golden Rocket, The
    4. Cold Cold Heart
    5. Poison Love
    6. I Wanna Play House with You
    7. Mom and Dad's Waltz - Lefty Frizzell
    8. Let's Live a Little
    9. Mockin' Bird Hill
    10. Sick, Sober and Sorry
    11. I Was Sorta Wonderin'
    12. Step It Up and Go
    13. Always Late (With Your Kisses) - Lefty Frizzell
    14. Too Old to Cut the Mustard - The Carlisles
    15. Hot Guitar, The - Eddie Hill
    16. Half as Much
    17. Rocket '88'
    18. Slow Poke
    19. Rhumba Boogie, The
    20. Just out of Reach (Of My Two Open Arms) - Stewart Family
    21. Chew Tabacco Rag
    22. Let Old Mother Nature Have Her Way
    23. (There'll Be) Peace in the Valley (For Me)
    24. Electricity - Jimmy Murphy
    25. Hey Good Lookin'
    26. Uncle Pen
    27. 'Tis Sweet to Be Remembered
    28. Honky Tonk Hardwood Floor - Jess Willard
    29. Down Yonder
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  • Additional Info
    Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): 16956

  • Credits
    Producer
    Engineer

    Given the track list of Dim Lights, Thick Smoke and Hillbilly Music 1951, an entry in Bear Family's stellar five-volume series, one can see that for country music fans, this was an amazing year all around. It's hard to imagine in the 21st century, the sounds of Tennessee Ernie Ford's fingerpoppin' "Shotgun Boogie" coming out of a radio speaker -- let alone being announced by a disc jockey -- or coming out of some primitive jukebox in a dancehall, but it was. It's the opening cut on this massive, 29-cut compilation, but as hot as it is, it's among equals here. The obvious ones are Hank Williams' "Cold Cold Heart," and "Hey Good Lookin,'" Lefty Frizzell's "Mom and Dad Waltz," and "Always Late (With Your Kisses)," and Eddy Arnold's "I Wanna Play House with You." But there are other tracks here perhaps not as well-known (except by the country music aficionados) that make this volume so essential: Mac Wiseman's "'Tis Sweet to Be Remembered," Eddie Hill's "Hot Guitar," Big Jeff's reading of Blind Boy Fuller's "Step It Up and Go," and arguably the first rock & roll song ever: Bill Haley's version of Jackie Brenston's "Rocket '88," as well as "Too Old to Cut the Mustard," by the Carlisles, and Jimmy Murphy's wailing "Electricity."As is customary for all releases on Bear Family, the set includes exhaustive liner notes, complete track information, and great photos. The entire set is packaged in a hardback-bound digipack and is worth every penny -- actually, the entire series is. For fans of hardcore honky tonk, Western swing, and hillbilly boogie along with some traditional country & western music, this set is essential listening. ~ Thom Jurek

  • Critic Reviews
    Record Collector (magazine) (p.98) - "[T]he country music charts of this period were still a broad church, encompassing everything from pop to cold war propaganda...to proto rock'n'roll....There's entertainment aplenty here..."
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