Friday, 26 June 2020

Bought In Error - But a Good Error

In an attempt to broaden my musical horizons, I happened upon a documentary about Outlaw Country.
Now Country & Western has always left me cold - all that "my woman gone and left me", "my granny has fallen over a cliff", "my doggie is dead", "too much booze isn't a bad thing", "my sister and my wife are the same person".
But Outlaw Country piqued an interest - it seemed to take C&W and imbue it with Blues, Folk, and Rock signatures.  Less Yee-hah, more introspective and reality based.
So I watched it, read about it, thought about it some more, and arrived at the conclusion that the one single album that would provide me an entrance to this genre would be:
'Wanted! The Outlaws' featuring Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson, Jessi Colter, and Tompall Glaser.

Fast forward a couple of months, and I'm wandering around a Record Shop (yes, I know, a very unlikely thing for me to be doing) looking for both something, and nothing in particular.
(Basically, having a good old brows - something Mrs D has never understood the concept of).
And then I remember - Outlaw Country - let's see if I can find any of that (that should get me another half hour in this shop).
Found: The Highwaymen - Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson, and Kris Kristofferson - that was one I remember reading about.
What was the other one?  The Outlaws.  A quick move to the O section, and there it is - a double Best Of compilation.  That must be it ...
Well, it wasn't exactly what I was looking for, but there was not a single ounce of upset as the CD player started to play.

Now what flew out of my speakers was not Willie Nelson's (sometimes whiny) voice or Waylon Jennings paying tribute to Cowboy Heroes - oh no, the air was filled with a slab of Southern Boogie Rock from a similar stable as Lynyrd Skynyrd or The Allman Brothers.
The fact there was a slight Country twang going in too meant I wasn't too far from the original intention, at least.
I listened, and then listened some more, and went on listening - if this purchase was a mistake, I'm pretty glad I made this mistake.
And their snuck away at track 5 is the key song (for me) - the one that pips Lynyrd Skynyrd's "Freebird" to the title of Best Southern Rock Song with A Long Guitar Solo - "Green Grass And High Tides"

There is only so much information the human brain can hold.  There's bound to be a bit of leakage at times (and not just from the brain ...), but this was one moment of befuddlement that I'm glad I befuddled.

Post Script: I did eventually get 'Wanted! The Outlaws' a couple of months later, and I wasn't disappointed.  It's a fine album, but is it as fine as this erroneous purchase?

Green Grass And High Tides


  1. I bought 'Wanted! The Outlaws' just as punk became the Next Big Thing. I made a few half hearted purchases of punks songs, but after "Wanted", Waylon was my main man.

  2. Coincidentally, The Stones had a best of album called "Big Hits (High Tide and Green Grass)"

  3. I discovered the Outlaws not too long ago myself, and I've been a country fan since childhood (blame Terry Wogan). The guitar on There Goes Another Love Song is incredible too.