Press Archive - Lefty Frizzell An Article From Life - The Complete Recordings - themortonreport.com
Lefty Frizzell arguably played almost as big a role in the development of modern country music as his friend Hank Williams. Nevertheless, he didn’t make it into the Country Music Hall of Fame until 1982 and, for reasons I’ve never quite figured out, he is not as well known or loved by the public today as, say, Williams or George Jones.
He continues to be revered by his fellow musicians, however. “The soul of Hank Williams, the appeal of Johnny Cash, and the charisma of Elvis Presley. He had it all,” said the late, great Merle Haggard, one of Frizzell’s biggest fans. “The impact he had on country music, and on me, is not even measurable.” Indeed, Frizzell had a huge influence on many artists, including, in addition to Haggard, Randy Travis, John Anderson, and Willie Nelson. (Nelson recorded a whole album called To Lefty from Willie). Roy Orbison paid homage to him by choosing the name Lefty Wilbury for himself when he joined the Traveling Wilburys. George Jones looked up to Frizzell and Williams so much that his producer reportedly admonished him for trying to sound too much like them.
Press Archive - Lefty Frizzell An Article From Life - The Complete Recordings - Goldmine
Bear Family’s penchant for behemothic box sets has always been a reissue industry standard. Indeed, even today, with the majors bombarding us with similarly weighty, career-long round-ups (Nazareth, Judie Tzuke and Kate Bush are the latest), the Bear still stands head and shoulders above their efforts.
Rock boxes, after all, seem to focus only on past albums as-they-were-released, with a few unreleased bonuses or b-sides to sweeten the load. Bear Family, on the other hand, offer up everything. Every released track, every studio take, every false start… if it’s out there, they find it, and rock collectors can only gaze on enviously as their country-loving cousins unwrap… for example, Lefty Frizzell’s An Article from Life. It’s subtitled “the complete recordings,” and you know what? That’s an understatement.
Press Archive - Lefty Frizzell An Article From Life - The Complete Recordings - VINTAGE GUITAR - review, April 2019 print edition
Lefty Frizzell Life: The Complete Recordings
As none other than Merle Hag-gard proclaimed, Lefty Frizzell just may have been the great-est honky-tonk singer of all time, offering "The soul of Hank Williams, the appeal of Johnny Cash, and the charisma of Elvis." This boxed set offers ample evidence. The numbers alone tell the tale: 20 CDs with 361 tracks (including 31 newly added) totaling 867 minutes of playing time including an audio book on Lefty's life written (and read) by his brother, along with a 264-page deluxe hardcover book on his career and discography. Backing Frizzell was a who's who of guitar greats; Grady Martin was a stalwart, while Harold Bradley and Hank Garland often lent stellar support. Ernie Harvey picked the steel on one of Leo Fender's pioneering "electric tables," while steel ace Don Helms played on Lefty's classic "Long Black Veil." Frizzell himself fatuously picked a '49 Gibson SJ-200 with a custom neck and inlays by Paul Bigsby, setting country An Article From fashion for decades to come. — MD