Tammy Wynette

I Still Believe in Fairy Tales

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The sound of this Billy Sherrill production conjures up images: a screened in porch on a summer night, and music designed to be played at any volume without disturbing the neighbors. A country session band strained through a filter until all the bottom disappears. And then there's country queen Tammy Wynette, known for her wailing, but here sounding downright submissive. In fact, this is country music that might have been written as the background for the signing of a surrender treaty. "I'll Take What You Can Give Me (When You Can)" is the opening track on side two, but might have been a memo from Wynette to Sherrill concerning the songs selected for this album. The two created many, many recordings together and so it isn't such a shock that they might rest on their laurels now and then. The idea of a striking, energetic arrangement that jumps out of the speakers is the fairy tale here, even though Wynette and Sherrill have surely created just that at other times, at other studio sessions. Wynette comes out of the kitchen with the dish everyone has been waiting for right near the end, in the form of several of her original songs, which try a little harder and even have some pedal steel that hasn't been mixed out of the picture.

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