Rancho Deluxe

Jimmy Buffett

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Rancho Deluxe Review

by Johnny Loftus

Rancho Deluxe is Jimmy Buffett's soundtrack to the 1975 Western of the same name, written by his brother-in-law Thomas McGuane and starring a bunch of actors having way too much fun with an offbeat script. The slaphappy, slightly hung-over quality of the film falls over into the rangy roundup of honky tonk Buffett wrote for the soundtrack. "16 may get you 20 on a Saturday night," he smirks in "Livingston Saturday Night" (which he also performs in the movie); the song's hard country groove is so loosey-goosey it just might cause a bar fight in your living room. Bizarre incidental music experiments like "Some Gothic Ranch Action" align themselves next to dialogue from the film and a few more conventional country and western instrumental pieces. Elsewhere, Buffett proves himself more adept at rambling country and western than Nashville ever gave him credit for with the stirring fiddle and pedal steel of "Ridin' in Style" and the Cab Calloway in a cowboy hat hard-luck number "Left Me With a Nail to Drive." Rancho Deluxe might not appeal to Buffett's more casual fans, those content to wash their cheeseburgers down with Corona for ever and ever. But anyone digging deeper into his catalog (especially early LPs like A White Sport Coat and a Pink Crustacean) will get a big kick out of the material here. It's also recommended as the soundtrack to your next faro game.

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