Jimmie Davis

You Are My Sunshine: 1937-1948

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The second volume of Bear Family's retrospective on Jimmie Davis's recorded output carries listeners from 1937 through 1948, across five CDs. By this time, Davis had developed a smooth, quietly elegant yet stripped down sound, not too different from that of his slightly younger contemporary Gene Autry, with a virtuoso band behind him. Many of Davis' romantic ballads have a certain hint of jauntiness about them that prevents them from ever seeming overly sentimental. He intersperses them with the occasional jaunty country blues like "Hard Hearted Mama," and it's that balance -- the bouncing between the risqué, honky tonk style numbers, the romantic ballads, the Western trail ballads, and the gospel-themed numbers -- that make Davis' music early in this set very easy to take en masse. As time went by, however, he tended to emphasize the ballads more, partly out of the feeling that a man holding public office, as he did at different times from 1938 onward, shouldn't sing about certain subjects. Discs three and four show Davis becoming downright sophisticated by country standards, his intonation far more subtle and his backing group evoking Hollywood as well as the South, and freely incorporating elements of swing and popular music. And then, suddenly, in 1942, the blues returns, albeit dressed up a little, in the guise of "Columbus Stockade Blues" and "Walkin' My Blues Away," surrounding a fast-paced "Plant Some Flowers by My Grave." And disc five ties up loose ends between the two sets, closing out this phase of Davis' career with the recordings that he did with the Lawrence Welk Orchestra during the late '40s, which work astonishingly well, but also featuring his hard blues and stripped-down country from the early '30s.

Track Listing - Disc 1

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1 2:32
2 2:57
3
3:04
4
3:09
5 3:14
6 2:23
7 3:06
8 3:07
9 2:54
10 3:07
11 2:45
12 2:41
13 3:17
14 2:38
15 2:50
16 3:03
17 3:16
18 2:55
19 3:12
20 2:38
21 2:31
22 2:47
23 2:56
24 3:07
25 2:41
26
2:48
27 2:48

Track Listing - Disc 2

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1 2:39
2 2:52
3 2:56
4 3:04
5
2:37
6 2:49
7 2:44
8 2:51
9 2:41
10 2:48
11 2:57
12 2:48
13 2:39
14 2:29
15 3:08
16 2:49
17 2:53
18 2:30
19 2:54
20 2:28
21 2:37
22 2:55
23 2:42
24 2:50
25 2:50
26 2:50
27
2:29

Track Listing - Disc 3

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1 2:46
2 2:39
3 2:40
4 2:45
5 3:04
6 3:06
7 2:46
8 2:39
9 2:42
10 2:30
11 2:41
12 2:59
13 3:08
14
2:33
15 2:43
16 2:41
17 2:29
18 2:35
19 3:00
20 3:06
21 2:45
22 2:42
23 2:44
24 2:43
25 2:43
26 2:39
27
2:40

Track Listing - Disc 4

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1 2:38
2 2:46
3 2:37
4 2:57
5 2:25
6 2:40
7 2:40
8 2:57
9 2:44
10 2:30
11 2:30
12 2:27
13 2:39
14 2:54
15 2:19
16 2:25
17 2:56
18 2:22
19 2:19
20 2:45
21 2:22
22 2:22
23 2:25
24 2:53
25 2:37
26 3:05
27 2:30
28 2:35
29 2:52
30 2:33

Track Listing - Disc 5

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1 2:22
2 2:40
3 2:31
4 2:50
5 2:35
6 3:29
7 2:58
8 2:59
9 2:59
10 2:59
11 2:57
12 2:54
13 2:30
14 3:06
15 3:07
16 2:47
17 3:00
18 2:41
19 2:46
20 2:59
21 2:52
22 2:44
23 2:45
24 3:12
25
2:34
26 2:40
27 2:55
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