Chet Atkins

Solid Gold '68

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By 1968, Chet Atkins was so caught up in the Nashville music machine that he helped create -- and perhaps so consumed with production and executive tasks -- that putting much thought into his own records had to take a back seat. Either that or forces out of his control told him to do this and that. Hence Solid Gold '68, a mostly overproduced, perfunctory collection of period pop hits that does neither the guitarist nor the tunes much good. Atkins mostly ambles through things like "Lady Madonna," "The Sound of Silence," "Harper Valley P.T.A.," and "Grazing in the Grass" in his easygoing pop/rock mode, although he does display some Southern-tinged affinity for Laura Nyro's "Stoned Soul Picnic." The orchestrations by Nashville mainstay Bill Walker are hackwork; those by Cam Mullins are somewhat better, with more personality. Only completists who must hear everything need search for this.

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