Red Sovine is chiefly remembered for his recitative, highly sentimental truck-driving anthems from the 1960s, including "Teddy Bear" and "Phantom 309." With his rich baritone voice, Sovine was perfectly suited for such material, and he tugged shamelessly at obvious heart-strings with narratives full of faithful dogs, struggling truckers, and ill or dying children. But Sovine was also a fine traditional honky tonk singer in the classic Hank Williams mold, and truthfully, most of his recordings fall closer to that center than they do the sentimental narratives that brought him his greatest success. This set collects 24 of Sovine's more traditional country sides recorded for independent label Starday Records in the '60s and early '70s, including duets with Lois Williams ("Why Don't You Haul Off and Love Me") and Minnie Pearl ("Nobody's Business"). It's solid stuff, and if there aren't any big hits here, it does fall together to form a nice portrait of the more traditional side of Sovine's career. Many of these 'sides are new to the digital format, which makes this a nice archival collection, as well.
AllMusic Review by Steve Leggett