Herb Jeffries

The Bronze Buckaroo (Rides Again)

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    8
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This record is a winner, among the finest cowboy albums ever recorded, and maybe the most fascinating. Jeffries does these songs with all manner of jazz inflections, in his singing as well as in the back-up arrangements--there's nothing here that couldn't have fit well in any night club during the 1940's in any part of the country; yeah, there are twangy steel guitars and there's some fiddle back-up, but the dominant presence is Jeffries, with more than half a century of jazz and blues singing behind him. His baritone voice makes for a wonderful (and very different "Tumbling Tumbleweeds"). He gets help from singers as diverse as Michael Martin Murphey, the Sons of the San Joachin, and the Mills Brothers, and it all works magnificently. The running time is a little short at 30 minutes, but the songs are all priceless, for fans of old style '40s pop (the Mills Bros. etc.) and jazz as well as country and cowboy songs.

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