Patsy Cline

The Last Sessions

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Patsy Cline's last sessions took place over four nights in February of 1963. Like the rest of her recordings, these were produced by Owen Bradley in Nashville with some A-list pickers of the time. Bradley himself played bass on the majority of the cuts, with Floyd Cramer on piano, Grady Martin on guitar, and the Jordanaires on vocals throughout. After eight years with Bradley and three with Decca, a label that allowed her and Bradley more freedom over song selection than her earlier Four Star contract, Cline was going at the pop market full-tilt.

Gone are the crying steel guitars, the raw fiddles, the clanging rockabilly sound that often surfaced on her '50s work. While her voice sails effortlessly through "Blue Moon of Kentucky," for example, the band sounds like they've been cleaned up and put in sober blue suits for the occasion. But by 1963, that wasn't the point anyway; the point was the kind of delicious agony Cline could fill her voice with on tunes like the shivery "Sweet Dreams (Of You)." Two of the 12 tunes from these four final sessions are not included here: "Faded Love" and "I'll Sail My Ship Alone."

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