Jimmie F. Rodgers

Twilight on the Trail/When the Spirit Moves You

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AllMusic Review by

Although his biggest chart hits like 1957’s “Honeycomb,” “Kisses Sweeter Than Wine” and "Oh-Oh, I'm Falling in Love Again" were definitely built for pop success, Jimmie Rodgers was essentially a folk artist at heart, and if the early publicity hype called him “a cross between Elvis Presley and Burl Ives,” a fairly laughable claim, taking Presley’s name out and pasting in Buddy Holly’s instead would make a statement that rings closer to the truth. Rodgers recorded several albums for Roulette Records between 1958 and 1962, two of which, 1959’s Twilight on the Trail and 1960’s When the Spirit Moves You, are combined here on a single disc, and while an album of cowboy songs and one of gospel spirituals would seem at first glance to be outside the box for Rodgers, they really aren’t, and they fit so well together that they make a completely seamless and delightfully varied 23-track sequence highlighted by a sleek version of “Ghost Riders in the Sky,” an interestingly arranged “Cool Water,” a fun “Tumbling Tumbleweeds,” a jaunty “Joshua Fit the Battle O’ Jericho,” and the earnest “Go Down Moses.” No, there’s isn’t a trace of Elvis Presley here, but the easy, natural warmth of a Burl Ives is, and if Rodgers isn’t exactly folk rock, he clearly prefigured it.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1
2:32
2
2:37
3
3:26
4 3:39
5 2:37
6 4:15
7 3:19
8
3:10
9
4:01
10
3:32
11
2:47
12
3:17
13
1:58
14
3:20
15
2:13
16
2:58
17
1:47
18
2:33
19
2:51
20 2:30
21
1:39
22
2:44
23
1:55
blue highlight denotes track pick