Patsy Cline

Golden Classics

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Like Collectibles' subsequent release, WALKIN' AFTER MIDNIGHT: THE VERY BEST OF PATSY CLINE, GOLDEN CLASSICS includes material from the first half of Cline's career, her Four Star recordings period of 1955-1960. Most of the tracks here are included on WALKIN' AFTER MIDNIGHT, which includes more tracks altogether. The five tunes here that didn't end up on WALKIN' are certainly worthy ones. On "Too Many Secrets," producer Owen Bradley matched up Cline with a poppin' jazz-style studio ensemble, while "Let the Teardrops Fall" and "I'm Blue Again" are from the rockabilly side of Cline's '50s work, with the singer even affecting a toned-down but Presley-esque hiccup on the latter (maybe that just happened to anyone who was around the Jordanaires as much as Patsy and the King were).

The balance of this collection demonstrates the range of experimentation Cline and Bradley undertook as her career was getting off the ground. Tunes like "Hidin' Out" and "Crazy Dreams" are textbook honky-tonk, with shivering steel and plaintive fiddle, while "Three Cigarettes in an Ashtray," a torchy ballad, offers a glimpse of the pop-crossover sound with which Cline would find her greatest success just a few years later.

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