Jerry Jeff Walker

Bein' Free

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After his minor hit "Mr. Bojangles" and strange 1969 sophomore solo album Five Years Gone, Jerry Jeff Walker made the (moderately) more bluesy and countrified Bein' Free, a strong album on which he wrote nine of the 11 songs. "I'm Gonna Tell on You," a funny anti-hypocrisy singalong, kicks things off, and the album moves from there into the sorts of poetic singer/songwriter creations that could just as easily have landed Walker's records in the folk or rock bins. "A Secret" makes good use of Michael Utley's organ, "Vince Triple-O Martin" and the stripped-down "Harmonica Talk" are blues-based stompers, while most of the remainder is comparatively hushed and introspective. Bein' Free is a freewheeling and fun affair from one of country music's most original Yankee practitioners.

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