Cherry Red imprint Morello focuses on country music reissues and we've covered them here in the past. The label has been releasing compilations steadily and we thought we would tell you about some of their recent releases, focusing on albums from the 1960s and 1970s.
First up is a collection of three albums from Nashville Sound stalwart Bobby Bare released on a 2-CD set. The first two albums make their first appearance on CD outside of a Bear Family box set in 1994 and the third is completely new to CD. The Ohio native signed a contract with Capitol Records in the 1950s but didn't have much success at the label. When success did find him, it was ironically not under his own name. Right before going into the Army, Bare wrote and recorded demo of a tune called "The All American Boy" for Bill Parsons. Fraternity Records decided to release the Bare demo, but erroneously credited it to Parsons and it went to No. 2 on the Billboard pop chart. This garnered Bare a new record deal with Fraternity but he would not break out under his own name until Chet Atkins signed him to RCA Records in the early 1960s. He had success early on under Atkins' aegis, recording two albums and earning a Grammy with "Detroit City" and several top five Country chart placement.
Morello's compilation picks up with Bare's third album for RCA, The Travelin' Bare from 1964. The album produced no singles but hit No. 14 on the Country album chart. Bare contributed two of his own songs ("Down in Mexico" and "Lonely Town") and also covered a pair of Charlie Rich tunes ("Sittin' and Thinkin' and "Long Way to Tennessee") among other songs.
Bare then recorded a duet album with Skeeter Davis in 1965 (Tunes for Two, collected last year by Morello on a 2-CD set with other Bare collaborative albums) and returned later in the year with the next album on this new compilation: Constant Sorrow. Showing the changing times in Nashville, Bare recorded a Willie Nelson song ("One Day At a Time") and a pair of compositions from Bob Dylan ("Blowin' in the Wind" and "Don't Think Twice, It's All Right.) A couple of Waylon Jennings songs were also included: "I'm A Man of Constant Sorrow" and the Dan Bowman co-write "Just To Satisfy You" which hit No. 31 on the Country chart for Bare. He had slightly more success with his own "Times Are Getting' Hard" from the album which hit No. 30.
Skipping Bare's first album of 1966 (Talk Me Some Sense), Morello's collection wraps up with his second LP of that year: The Streets of Baltimore. Bare once again contributes two of his own tunes ("Take Me Home to Mama" and "Cold and Lonely City") and steps outside of the normal country repertoire of the time by covering songs by Gordon Lightfoot ("Early Morning Rain"), Lee Hazlewood ("Houston") and Chuck Berry ("Memphis, Tennessee"). The biggest hit off the album would be the title song, written by Tompall Glaser and Harlan Howard, which would hit No. 5 on the Country charts and the lower reaches of the Pop chart. The album itself climbed to No. 7 Country.
Bare remained on RCA through 1977, with a three-year sojourn to Mercury in the middle of that time from 1970-1972. He then moved to Columbia Records until 1983. He has only recorded sporadically since then, with his most recent album being last year's Things Change. He was induced into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2013 and, in April of this year, was reinstated into the Grand Ole Opry after many years away.
Next up is a CD bringing together a pair of albums from an underrated vocalist. The single-named artist Dottsy was born Dottsy Brodt in Texas. After performing on radio during her teen years, Dottsy went to Nashville in the mid-1970s and began to sing demos. Producer Roy Dea liked what he heard and Dottsy was signed by RCA. She released two singles initially, "Storms Never Last" by Jessi Colter and "I'll Be Your San Antone Rose" by Susanna Clark. Both would go to the Top 20 of the Country chart and be featured on her debut album, The Sweetest Thing, released in February, 1976.
Her second album, Tryin' To Satisfy You, would not appear until over three years later, in April 1979. She had released several singles in the interim, including her 1977 rendition of Kent Robbins' "(After Sweet Memories) Play Born To Lose Again" which hit No. 10 on the chart, her highest placement there. The title track of the album was a Waylon Jennings tune (written specifically for Dottsy) which would hit No. 12 in 1979.
Dottsy then moved to Tanglewood Records and released a few singles in 1981 and 1982. After that, she quit the music business to focus on family. She returned in 2010 with a new album, Meet Me In Texas on Heart of Texas Records, and followed that up in 2016 with Texas Sensation on the same label.
Morello's new CD not only contains Dottsy's two albums for RCA, but also six additional non-LP sides which represent her complete RCA output.
Both the Bobby Bare and Dottsy compilations were produced by Lee Simmonds and remastered by Alan Wilson at Western Star Studios. Each contains an 8-page color booklet featuring concise liner notes by Tony Byworth. Both are available now at the links below, and watch this space for more on Morello Records' slate!
- Down in Mexico
- Sittin' and Thinkin'
- I've Lived A Lot In My Time
- I'm Gettin' Lonely
- Long Way to Tennessee
- Sweeter Than The Flowers
- I Was Coming Home To You
- Long Black Limousine
- Another Bridge To Burn
- Lonely Town
- Candy Coated Kisses
- When I'm Gone
- I'm A Man of Constant Sorrow
- Blowin' In The Wind
- Times Are Gettin' Hard
- Lemon Tree
- So Soon
- One Day At A Time
- Delia's Gone
- Just To Satisfy You
- I'm A Long Way From Home
- The Deepening Snow
- Don't Think Twice, It's All Right
- Countin' The Hours- Countin' The Days
- Early Morning Rain
- Saginaw, Michigan
- Take Me Home to Mama
- Memphis, Tennessee
- The Streets of Baltimore
- That's How I Wanted It To Be
- Cold and Lonely City
- Changin' My Mind
- There Ain't No Fun In This Town
- Green, Green Grass of Home
CD 1, Tracks 1-12 from The Travelin' Bare, RCA Victor LP LSP-2955, 1964
CD 1, Tracks 13-24 from Constant Sorrow, RCA Victor LP LSP-3395, 1965
CD 2, Tracks 1-12 from The Streets of Baltimore, RCA Victor LSP-3618, 1966
- I'll Be Your San Antone Rose
- If I Only Had The Words (To Tell You)
- We Still Sing Love Songs Here in Texas
- There Is A Place
- Lying In My Arms
- The Sweetest Thing (I'll Ever Known)
- A Good Love Is Like A Good Song
- Storms Never Last
- Follow Me
- Just Remember Who Your Friends Are
- Slip Away
- It Should Have Been Easy
- So Hard Livin' Without You
- Tryin' To Satisfy You
- Lying In My Arms
- Somebody Been Loving Her
- (After Sweet Memories) Play Born To Lose Again
- I Just Had You On My Mind
- Win Some, Lose Some, Lonesome
- I'm Not Trying To Forget
- If You Say It's So
- Love Is A Two-Way Street
- Send Me The Pillow You Dream On
- Everybody's Reaching Out For Someone
- Here In Love
- When I'm Gone
Tracks 1-10 from The Sweetest Thing, RCA LP APL1-1358, 1976
Tracks 11-20 from Tryin' To Satisfy You, RCA Victor LP AHL1-3380, 1979
Track 21 from RCA Victor single PB-10423, 1975
Track 22 from RCA Victor single PB-10766, 1976
Track 23 from RCA Victor single PB-10982, 1977
Track 24 from RCA Victor single PB-11138, 1977
Track 25 from RCA Victor single PB-11203, 1978
Track 26 from RCA Victor single PB-11743, 1979