Buck Owens

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Remembering Review

by Steve Leggett

Prior to signing with Capitol Records in 1957 and going on to develop his trademark Bakersfield sound, Buck Owens recorded a series of stripped-down demo-quality sides for the independent Pep Records label, several of which were actually commercially released. Remembering collects 11 of these sides, and listeners should be aware that these are fairly muddy recordings that exhibit more future promise than anything else, and sound nothing at all like the bright, electric guitar-driven sides that became Owens' stock in trade later in his career. That said, tracks like the opener, "Yer for Me," have a kind of rough intimacy that is quite compelling, and one track here, the rockabilly-styled "Rhythm 'n Booze," which Owens originally released under the name Corky Jones, sounds like a wild outtake from a long lost Sun Records session.

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