Following the release earlier this year of Waylon Jennings' first four RCA Victor albums on one 2-CD set, Cherry Red's Morello imprint has returned to the outlaw country legend's early milieu with a trilogy of albums from 1969-1970 on another 2-CD collection: Waylon (1970), Just to Satisfy You (1969), and the collaboration Country-Folk with The Kimberlys (1969).
This three-for-one release picks up where one of Morello's previous collections from the prolific singer - including Love of the Common People (1967), Hangin' On (1968), Only the Greatest (1968), and Jewels (1968) - left off. 1969's Just to Satisfy You, produced like Jennings' previous RCA long-players by Nashville chief and guitar hero Chet Atkins along with Felton Jarvis. The title track dated back to 1963 when Waylon and Don Bowman co-wrote and recorded for it for Hollywood label A&M Records. Though it gained regional traction, it failed to crack the national market. But it did garner the attention of singer-songwriter Bobby Bare, whose patronage in part convinced Atkins to sign Jennings. "Just to Satisfy You" went on to see cover renditions from Glen Campbell, Barbara Mandrell, Jerry Reed, and others, and when Waylon re-recorded it with his pal Willie Nelson in 1982, it became their third duet chart-topper. The LP, a No. 7 entry on the Billboard Country chart, also presented material by Ben Peters ("I've Been Needing Someone Like You"), Charlie Rich ("Lonely Weekends"), Curly Putman ("Change My Mind"), and Shel Silverstein ("For the Kids"). Anita Carter joined Waylon for two songs. Despite this top-drawer array of talent, Jennings chafed under Atkins' direction, and the elder statesman was all too ready to return full-time to his work as a musician. Waylon's next album would be his first with big band veteran and music industry veteran Danny Davis of The Nashville Brass.
Jennings' relationship with Davis was famously fraught, but the music they created together is still enduring. Country-Folk with The Kimberlys remains one of Jennings' most atypical albums. Waylon encouraged Chet Atkins to sign the group consisting of two sisters and their husbands - both of whom were brothers. (One of the wives, Verna Gay Kimberly, would enter into a relationship with Waylon around this time.) Under Davis' direction, the album epitomized the lush pop side of the Nashville Sound.
While unusual within the Jennings discography, Country-Folk yielded a hit with Jimmy Webb's epic "MacArthur Park," a No. 2 hit for actor Richard Harris in 1968. "Danny and I got into it a couple of times over the arrangement," Jennings wrote in his memoirs. "I knew exactly what I wanted the strings to do; I had to hum the parts. He probably had his own ideas. But the single got into the top 25 that fall...By then, everybody was more than happy to claim it was their idea." The track also crossed over to the Hot 100 and earned Waylon and The Kimberlys a Grammy Award for Best Country Performance by a Duo or Group. Country-Folk also featured three original songs by group member Harold Gay as well as covers from the pens of Jackie DeShannon ("Come Stay with Me"), Joe South ("Games People Play"), Gordon Lightfoot ("Long Way Back Home"), and Tom Springfield of The Springfields ("World of Our Own"). With its strong songs and soft pop feel, the album made it to No. 13 Country.
The third and final album in this set, 1970's Waylon, was assembled from various sessions produced by both Chet Atkins and Danny Davis. A number of songs featured his band, The Waylors, while Merle Haggard's "All of Me Belongs to You" was recorded with Anita Carter. Waylon earned the artist his third top 5 solo hit with his cover of Chuck Berry's "Brown-Eyed Handsome Man," the only single released from the LP. Waylon is very much a transitional album, with the Nashville Sound largely intact but Waylon pushing its boundaries with such material as future fellow outlaw Mickey Newbury's "33rd of August." The album also featured "Yellow Haired Woman," Waylon's tribute to his third wife Barbara Rood, and a re-recording of Liz Anderson's "Yes, Virginia."
Morello's collection includes an eight-page booklet with two pages of liner notes from Tony Byworth and basic credits for all three albums. Alan Wilson has remastered all three albums. Waylon/Just to Satisfy You/Country-Folk with The Kimberlys is out now. You'll find the track listing and order links below.
Just to Satisfy You (RCA Victor LSP-4137, 1969)
- Lonely Weekends
- Sing the Blues to Daddy
- Change My Mind
- Farewell Party
- Rings of Gold (with Anita Carter)
- Just to Satisfy You
- I Lost Me
- I've Been Needing Someone Like You
- For the Kids
- I Got You (with Anita Carter)
- Straighten My Mind
Country-Folk with The Kimberlys (RCA Victor LSP-4180, 1969)
- MacArthur Park
- These New Changing Times
- Come Stay with Me
- Cindy, Oh Cindy
- Games People Play
- Mary Ann Regrets
- Let Me Tell You My Mind
- Drivin' Nails in the Wall
- Long Way Back Home
- But You Know I Love You
- A World of Our Own
CD 2: Waylon (RCA Victor LSP-4260, 1970)
- Brown-Eyed Handsome Man
- Just Across the Way (with The Waylors)
- Don't Play the Game
- Shutting Out the Lights (with The Waylors)
- I May Never Pass This Way Again
- The 33rd of August
- Yellow-Haired Woman
- Where Love Has Died
- All of Me Belongs to You (with Anita Carter)
- Yes, Virginia (with The Waylors)
- This Time Tomorrow (I'll Be Gone)