King Curtis

Country Soul

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This album of country standards was intended to be King Curtis' answer to Ray Charles' Modern Sounds in Country and Western Music. It never sold remotely as well as Charles' album, primarily because of Curtis's more perfunctory singing and some unwise choices of music to cover -- "Night Train To Memphis," "Raunchy" (which is an instrumental), and "I'm Movin' On" work as R&B instrumentals, with the latter benefiting from some sizzling interplay between the guitars, the trumpets, and Curtis's sax. But "High Noon" and "Home On the Range" are a lot less convincing, conceptually as well as in execution. There are a few surprises, however, such as a version of "Your Cheatin' Heart" that tries desperately to transform itself into "Stand By Me." (out of print)