The Flying Burrito Brothers

Sons of the Golden West

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Getting a handle on the ever-changing lineup of the Flying Burrito Brothers is more difficult than naming the musicians onstage at a Lynyrd Skynyrd concert -- at one point in the '80s, the Burritos contained no original members. On Sons, original pedal steel player Sneaky Pete Kleinow teamed with country songwriter John Beland to create an unassuming collection of country-rock tunes. By eschewing the slickness of modern Nashville in favor of a rootsier sound, the Burritos have the right idea, but country songs about UFOs ("Area 51") hardly do justice to the great body of work the group amassed in the late '60s and early '70s. The lyrics to "Ode to Gram," a tale about a spurned fan who came to a live show hoping to see the legendary singer, speak all too clearly about the Burritos' post-'70s career and its lack of direction.

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