The Statler Brothers

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Showtime Review

by Jonathan Widran

Fans of traditional country music who are dismayed at the increasing attempts by country-based artists to crossover to pop audiences will enjoy the classic C&W flavors of Showtime from a legendary quartet, featuring an appealing mix of witty ditties ("You Just Haven't Done It Yet") and lyrically clever ballads ("Too Late for Daisies," which features the line "When You're pushing up daisies, it's too late for roses"). Don and Harold Reid composed the majority of the pieces, and though the collection is ballad heavy, many of these old-fashioned tunes have the potential to become standards. The epitome of the Statler Brothers harmonies comes across on the chipper "I've Had a Good Time," a spirited look back at life à la "My Way." The Statler sound is steeped in the gospel-country tradition, and it's always good to hear a deeper sense of spirituality late in the tracking tunes like "The Other Side of the Cross" (a very descriptive scene of Jesus' crucifixion, with each group member taking a verse) and the a cappella gem "I've Got Jesus on My Side."

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