Steve Young - Renegade Picker & No Place To Fall

Posted By : bearwil | Date : 24 Apr 2007 20:09:09 | Comments : 3 |

Steve Young - Renegade Picker & No Place To Fall (2 cd)
Americana | WAV cd quality 8 rar-files 790 mb | 320 kbps mp3 2 rar-files 190 mb | covers

Steve Young (All Music Guide)

A singer, tunesmith, and purveyor of what he dubbed "Southern music" -- a brew of country, folk, rock, blues, gospel, and Celtic styles -- Steve Young was a songwriter's songwriter, an acclaimed performer whose work found its greatest commercial success in the hands of other artists and earned him praise from the likes of Waylon Jennings, Townes Van Zandt, and Lucinda Williams. Born in Georgia and raised throughout the South, by his teens Young was already playing guitar and writing his own songs. In the early '60s, he moved to New York City and became affiliated with the burgeoning Greenwich Village folk music scene. After a brief return to Alabama, where he'd spent time growing up, he settled in California in 1964.

On the West Coast, Young found work as a postal carrier while striking up friendships with the likes of Stephen Stills and Van Dyke Parks. A tenure with the psychedelic folk unit Stone Country yielded an eponymous 1968 LP, and a year later, Young issued his solo debut Rock Salt & Nails, a country-rock excursion featuring cameos by Gram Parsons, Chris Hillman, and Gene Clark. He moved to Reprise in 1971, and with the title track of that year's Seven Bridges Road, he offered perhaps his best-known composition, popularized through a series of covers by artists like the Eagles, Joan Baez, Rita Coolidge, and Ian Matthews. He had another tremendous success when Waylon Jennings covered "Lonesome, On'ry and Mean" in 1973, turning it into a signature anthem of the outlaw country movement; later on, Hank Williams, Jr. notched a hit with "Montgomery in the Rain." As for his recording career, Young released 1975's Honky Tonk Man on the tiny Mountain Railroad label before his songwriting success earned him a shot with RCA. The result was two excellent albums, 1976's Renegade Picker and 1978's No Place to Fall.

Despite his success as a songwriter, Young flirted with the charts but never rose beyond a devoted cult following. He spent the majority of the 1980s touring the world, garnering a reputation as a standout live performer, and released occasional records like 1982's To Satisfy You, 1987's Look Homeward Angel, and 1990's Long Time Rider, the latter two of which were recorded in the Netherlands. The trend continued into the next decade, and in 1991 he issued his first concert recording, Solo/Live, an acoustic collection summarizing his career to date along with pop and soul covers like "You Don't Miss Your Water" and "Drift Away." A second LP on Watermelon, Switchblades of Love, followed two years later and continued his creative renaissance, but he fell silent for much of the rest of the '90s. In early 2000, he finally returned with Primal Young on the Appleseed label. Songlines Revisited, Vol. 1 appeared in 2006.

Renegade Picker Review by Thom Jurek (AMG)

Renegade Picker, issued in 1976, is the first of a pair recorded for RCA -- to date, Young's last major-label deal. Renegade Picker and its compatriot, No Place to Fall, issued two years later, are stellar examples of outlaw country at its best. Equal parts country, rock, blues, and gospel, the album is stocked like a trout pond with awesome songs. Young is his own best coach when it comes to recording material other than his own, and here he grabs the best. The title track is a stomping, choogling, cut-time anthem with Buddy Emmons' pedal steel and the popping electrics of Jerry Chock and Dale Sellers. As if to answer the question as to where the new hard-driving sound came from, Young follows it up with a moving cover of Merle Haggard's "I Can't Be Myself," a slow and deliberate honky tonk number full of restless country-soul. Side one's highlight is a rollicking version of J.D. Loudermilk's "Tobacco Road" driven by bluesed-out acoustic guitars, stomping feet, and Terry McMillan's harmonica. If side one is a primer on Young's country heritage and outlaw lineage, side two is his statement of purpose. The first cut is a re-recording of "Lonesome, On'ry, and Mean," with a full-on band burning at the edges of his vocal. Buddy Emmons' steel drives the entire track just atop the drums. But it's Young's version of Guy Clark's "Broken Hearted People (Take Me to a Barroom)" with Tracy Nelson's backing vocals that brings the essence of the fissure between the tradition and new breed home. His reading of the song is more country than Clark's folky one, but Young can hear Hank Williams and Billy Joe Shaver in Clark's lyric; he holds the tension between the two inside the grain of his voice. Renegade Picker and No Place to Fall have been reissued as a double-CD package on BMG in Europe, completely remastered for a budget price. No matter how you get these records, just get them. They sound as relevant as they did 25 years ago.

No Place To Fall

Issued in 1978, No Place to Fall is, regrettably, the second and last album for RCA. Like its predecessor, Renegade Picker, Young's ever-evolving music is centered in the heart of outlaw country this time out, though there are, as usual, interesting twists and turns. The band is stellar, with Buddy Emmons and Buddy Spicher, Tracy Nelson, Jerry Shook, Dale Sellers, and a bunch of guitar pickers, as well as drummer Kenny Malone, among others. The material is noteworthy on many levels, not the least of which is Young's decision to record, for the third time, "Montgomery in the Rain" and "Seven Bridges Road." Once more, he reinvents both songs, fills them out, adds different textures and stresses, and as a result, in the grain of his voice the meanings widen and deepen. The title track was written by the late Townes Van Zandt, and Young's read is damn near definitive, with layers of guitars haunting the middle of the tune and his own voice carrying the lonely edge of Van Zandt's lyric into oblivion. In addition, Young delves deep into Okie blues with a barbed-wire-and-whiskey cover of J.J. Cale's "Same Old Blues," with stunning slide guitar work. But it is in the cover of Mentor Williams' composition "Drift Away" -- the multi-million-seller recorded by Dobie Gray -- that Young offers his greatest surprise. This is a soul song, performed by a soul singer originally, and here Young, while keeping the song's intent essentially the same, transforms it into a country prayer. The same can be said for his loose cover of Dylan's "Don't Think Twice It's Alright"; Young reworks the melody slightly while emphasizing different parts of the lyric as the band fills in the cracks to bring an entirely new light to the song. No Place to Fall failed ultimately to sell, but it did a great deal to bolster his confidence as both a bandleader and as a producer. Young is a survivor, albeit on the fringes; he is one of the few whose records are so consistent as to be essential listening for anyone interested in late 20th century country music and rock & roll.

with thx to ChromosomeDamage

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Posted By: lateshift Date: 24 Apr 2007 21:13:49
super post.. many thanks, bearwil !! :)

Posted By: musiccollector Date: 26 Apr 2007 00:56:07
Excellent post indeed and good music. Thanks bearwill! :-)
Posted By: esaf Date: 26 Nov 2008 14:01:12