Johnny Bond

The Very Best of Johnny Bond

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Whether this 17-song compilation represents the very best of Johnny Bond is an arguable point, since it only includes material from 1955-1974, and none of his big hits from the late 1940s and early 1950s. For the period it covers, it does a decent job, emphasizing the rockabilly-tinged material he did in the late 1950s and early 1960s (particularly "Hot Rod Lincoln," which opens up the collection). The Top 30 pop hit "Hot Rod Lincoln," actually a cover of a 1955 single by Charlie Ryan, was the best thing he did in this mold; other tracks from this period included novelties ("The Way a Star Is Born" is pretty close to Bobby Bare's "The All American Boy"), variations of "Hot Rod Lincoln" ("Side Car Cycle"), honky-tonk-styled cuts that sounded close to Johnny Horton ("Wild Cat Baby"), country swing (Sheb Wooley's "Louisiana Swing"), even a bluesy cover of "The Tijuana Jail." There are some less distinguished, more mainstream country efforts from the 1960s and early 1970s, including his tacky smash "Ten Little Bottles."

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