Mickey Newbury - Frisco Mabel Joy (1971)

Mickey Newbury was a critically-acclaimed American singer-songwriter.

Mickey Newbury's third album came out in 1971, by which time he had moved from Mercury Records to Elektra. Since its fantastic predecessor (1969's Looks Like Rain) his songs had been recorded by all sorts of artists including Linda Ronstadt, Joan Baez, Waylon Jennings, Jerry Lee Lewis, Roy Orbison, Andy Williams and Willie Nelson. Like Looks Like Rain, Frisco Mabel Joy was recorded at the small Cinderella Sounds studio, and it continued in the same superb atmospheric style, with softly picked acoustic guitar, harmonica, and the familiar sounds of rain and thunder. The arrangements were also fleshed out by some big, stirring orchestral passages, which helped further define the unique Mickey Newbury sound (however apparently most of the 'strings' on this album were created through studio trickery, and actually consist of overdubbed layers of distorted steel guitar!)
The album introduced some more brilliant songs, and a new version of one which he had originally recorded on his RCA debut Harlequin Melodies - "How Many Times (Must The Piper Be Paid For His Song)" was transformed into something entirely different. But the best-known song on the album was technically not a Mickey Newbury original, but rather his arrangement of three 19th century songs - "Dixie", "The Battle Hymn Of The Republic" and "All My Trials" became "An American Trilogy", and gave Newbury his one and only hit as a singer - it got to #26 on the pop chart. However it is generally better known today through Elvis Presley's version.
Frisco Mabel Joy was another masterpiece, and has come to be seen as the second in a trilogy of masterpieces Newbury recorded at Cinderella Sounds.

Looks Like Rain (1969) <|> Heaven Help The Child (1973) 
More from Mickey Newbury


1 comment:

Jivethumb said...

link expired on frisco mabel joy..still amazes me how much music we have in common..hope all is well.cheers