WHEATSTRAW SUITE - THE DILLARDS
TRACK LISTING: I'll Fly Away, Nobody Knows, Hey Boys, The Biggest Whatever, Listen to the Sound, Little Pete, Reason to Believe, Single Saddle, I've Just Seen A Face, Lemon Chimes, Don't You Cry, Bending the Strings, She Sang Hymns Out of Tune
IMPRESSIONS: Pretty damn near perfect album. Uplifting as all hell. Soaring vocals, mischievous sense of humour, stunning musicianship. Buy this album immediately. At the time, The Band got all the press for fusing country and rock but the Dillards are the ones who did it better. Nothing the Band ever did is as beautiful as "She Sang Hymns Out of Tune"; one of the greatest songs I've ever heard. And besides beauty and virtuosity, the Dillards brought the element of "shit-kickingocity" to their country/rock fusion which the Band could only dream about accomplishing. All this and THE definitive version of the Beatles' "I've Just Seen A Face". I don't know -- there's just always been something of the dilettante aspect of the Band i.e. art school studies trying to be "authentic" whereas the Dillards don't have to work at it -- they ARE authentic. Produced a few traditional bluegrass albums for Capitol Records, the Dillards wanted to experiment with a rock/country fusion about which Capitol was unsure. The group left Capitol for Elektra where they were allowed to try some innovations with this album. Unfortunately the group's banjoist Doug Dillard, unhappy with this new direction, had already left the group. What followed with "WHEATSTRAW SUITE" is one of the most ground-breaking country/rock albums ever made.
MY FAVOURITE TRACKS: I'll Fly Away, Nobody Knows, Hey Boys, Listen to the Sound, Reason to Believe, Single Saddle, I've Just Seen A Face, Lemon Chimes, Don't You Cry, Bending the Strings, She Sang Hymns Out of Tune
GUEST ARTISTS: Buddy Emmons (pedal steel), Joe Osborn (electric bass), Jimmy Gordon (drums)
FACT SHEET: WHEATSTRAW SUITE is the Dillards' fourth album. The Dillards consisted of Rodney Dillard (lead vocals, guitar, dobro, pedal steel), Herb Peterson (lead vocals, Nashville rhythm guitar, banjo), Dean Webb (mandolin) and Mitch Jayne (acoustic bass). "Reason to Believe" was written by Tim Hardin. "Single Saddle" was written by Arthur Altman and Hal David. "I've Just Seen A Face" was written by John Lennon and Paul McCartney. "She Sang Hymns Out of Tune" was written by Jesse Lee Kincaid and had been previously recorded by Harry Nilsson.