Sunday, March 24, 2013

The Amazing Rhythm Aces - Stacked Deck / Too Stuffed To Jump (1975-76 us, fascinating drifting country roots 'n' roll melted with blues and jazzy harmonies)

 The Amazing Rhythm Aces were formed in Memphis in 1974 by bassist Jeff Davis and drummer Butch McDade, who had earlier recorded and toured with the great singer/songwriter Jesse Winchester. After striking out on their own, Davis and McDade enlisted vocalist/guitarist Russell Smith, keyboardist Billy Earheart, Dobro player Barry Burton, and pianist James Hooker to develop a sound composed of equal parts pop, country, and blue-eyed soul.

Their debut album is an edgy effort, rooted in a purer Southern sound, and embracing a soulfulness that their West Coast rivals lacked. The country gospel tune "Life's Railway to Heaven," the funky "The 'Ella B'," the stomping "Hit the Nail on the Head," and the soulful "The Beautiful Lie" would never have been done in as raw, intense, or bracing a fashion by their rivals.

Russell Smith brings a vocal performance to Charlie Rich's "Who Will the Next Fool Be" that sounds like he's channeling the ghost of Sam Cooke. And between those album highlights and the hits "Third Rate Romance" and "Amazing Grace (Used to Be Her Favorite Song)," the group works in a sweetly nostalgic piece called "King of the Cowboys," all about movie and television heroes.

The groups second album is only slightly less inventive than its first, still very countrified compared to most country-rock, and more soulful than most of the competition. The numbers range from rocking stompers like "Typical American Boy" to the lyrical "If I Just Know What to Say," with room in between for some fine western numbers ("The End Is Not in Sight," "Out of the Snow") -- the former a Grammy-winning country tune, the latter a beautiful mandolin workout -- and novelty songs ("A Little Italy Rag").
by Jason Ankeny and  Bruce Eder
1. Third Rate Romance - 3:17
2. The 'Ella B' - 4:33
3. Life's Railway To Heaven - 4:20
4. The Beautiful Lie (Butch Mcdade) - 2:54
5. Hit The Nail On The Head - 2:22
6. Who Will The Next Fool Be (Charlie Rich) - 2:48
7. Amazing Grace (Used To Be Her Favorite Song) - 3:17
8. Anything You Want (Russell Smith, James H. Brown Jr.) - 3:48
9. My Tears Still Flow - 3:25
10.Emma Jean - 2:47
11.Why Can't I Be Satisfied - 3:03
12.King Of The Cowboys (Russell Smith, James H. Brown Jr.) - 4:01
13.Typical American Boy (Russell Smith, James H. Brown Jr.) - 3:30
14.If I Just Knew What To Say (Stuart Wright) - 2:06
15.The End Is Not In Sight (The Cowboy Tune) - 3:51
16.Same Ol' Me (Butch Mcdade) - 2:24
17.These Dreams Of Losing You (Russell Smith, James H. Brown Jr.) - 3:29
18.I'll Be Gone - 2:54
19.Out Of The Snow - 3:39
20.Fool For The Woman - 2:43
21.A Little Italy Rag - 2:21
22.Dancing The Night Away (Russell Smith, James H. Brown Jr.) - 5:38
All tracks written by Russell Smith unless stated

The Amazing Rhythm Aces
*Barry Burton - Dobro, Guitars, Mandolin,  Vocals
*Jeff Davis - Bass, Vocals
*Billy Earheart - Keyboards, Organ, Piano
*James Hooker - Clavinet, Keyboards, Piano, Vocals
*Jim Kershaw - Guitar
*Butch Mcdade - Drums, Percussion, Vocals
*Russell Smith - Guitars, Harmonica, Vocals

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  1. Hi... Thank you very much! Have you got the recently remastered reissue?

  2. ELO Marios!....I wanna get reacquainted, Please RE-up The Amazing Rhythm Aces

    1. Snosbig, The Amazing Rhythm Aces replay...