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Sweetheart of the Rodeo [Legacy Edition Europe]

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The Byrds 6/24/2008

Review

The Byrds' Sweetheart of the Rodeo was not the first important country-rock album (Gram Parsons managed that feat with the International Submarine Band's debut Safe at Home), and the Byrds were hardly strangers to country music, dipping their toes in the twangy stuff as early as their second album. But no major band had gone so deep into the sound and feeling of classic country (without parody or condescension) as the Byrds did on Sweetheart; at a time when most rock fans viewed country as a musical "L'il Abner" routine, the Byrds dared to declare that C&W could be hip, cool, and heartfelt. Though Gram Parsons had joined the band as a pianist and lead guitarist, his deep love of C&W soon took hold, and Roger McGuinn and Chris Hillman followed his lead; significantly, the only two original songs on the album were both written by Parsons (the achingly beautiful "Hickory Wind" and "One Hundred Years from Now"), while on the rest of the set classic tunes by Merle Haggard, the Louvin Brothers, and Woody Guthrie were sandwiched between a pair of twanged-up Bob Dylan compositions. While many cite this as more of a Gram Parsons album than a Byrds set, given the strong country influence of McGuinn's and Hillman's later work, it's obvious Parsons didn't impose a style upon this band so much as he tapped into a sound that was already there, waiting to be released. If the Byrds didn't do country-rock first, they did it brilliantly, and few albums in the style are as beautiful and emotionally affecting as this. [Sony issued their European Legacy Edition in 2008.] ~ Mark Deming
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  1. # Track Artist Length
  2. 1 You Ain't Going Nowhere The Byrds 2:38
  3. 2 I Am a Pilgrim The Byrds 3:42
  4. 3 The Christian Life The Byrds 2:33
  5. 4 You Don't Miss Your Water The Byrds 3:51
  6. 5 You're Still on My Mind The Byrds 2:26
  7. 6 Pretty Boy Floyd The Byrds 2:37
  8. 7 Hickory Wind The Byrds 3:34
  9. 8 One Hundred Years from Now The Byrds 2:43
  10. 9 Blue Canadian Rockies The Byrds 2:5
  11. 10 Life in Prison The Byrds 2:47
  12. 11 Nothing Was Delivered The Byrds 3:34
  13. 12 You Got a Reputation The Byrds 3:10
  14. 13 Lazy Days The Byrds 3:29
  15. 14 Pretty Polly The Byrds 2:56
  16. 15 The Christian Life [Rehearsal, Take 11] The Byrds 2:58
  17. 16 Life in Prison [Rehearsal, Take 11] The Byrds 3:1
  18. 17 You're Still on My Mind [Rehearsal, Take 43] The Byrds 2:31
  19. 18 One Hundred Years from Now [Rehearsal, Take 2] The Byrds 3:23
  20. 19 All I Have Are Memories [Instrumental] The Byrds 4:46
  21. 1 Nashville West The Byrds 1:57
  22. 2 You're Still on My Mind The Byrds 1:57
  23. 3 Pretty Boy Floyd The Byrds 3:12
  24. 4 Drug Store Truck Drivin' Man The Byrds 2:27
  25. 5 Medley: Turn! Turn! Turn! (To Everything There Is a Season)/Mr. Tambour The Byrds 9:46
  26. 6 Close Up the Honky Tonks The Byrds 2:59
  27. 7 Buckaroo The Byrds 2:1
  28. 8 The Christian Life The Byrds 2:9
  29. 9 Time Between The Byrds 2:8
  30. 10 King Apathy III The Byrds 3:14
  31. 11 Bad Night at the Whiskey The Byrds 3:50
  32. 12 This Wheel's on Fire The Byrds 4:17
  33. 13 Sing Me Back Home The Byrds 3:7
  34. 14 So You Want to Be a Rock 'N' Roll Star The Byrds 2:36
  35. 15 He Was a Friend of Mine The Byrds 2:32
  36. 16 Chimes of Freedom The Byrds 3:23

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