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Sleeper Wherever I Fall

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Album Review

Sleeper Wherever I Fall feels like a temporary corrective to Bare's trend of relying heavily on Shel Silverstein's songbook, containing not a single Silverstein song and placing Bare a bit closer to contemporary 1978 trends. He's warm and smooth on the lullaby "Sleep Tight Good Night Man," his first song that could comfortably fit within the emerging Urban Cowboy trend, and he follows that mellow sound through the sleek "What Did It Get Me," the lush melodrama "Goin' Up's Easy, Comin' Down's Hard," and a smooth soulful version of Rodney Crowell's "On a Real Good Night." These are balanced by some outright rockers — the laid-back funk of "Hot Afternoon (Arizona Desert)," covers of the Byrds ("I'll Feel a Whole Lot Better") and the Stones ("The Last Time"), the slow swamp blues of "The Way I Feel Tonight" — and a song or two that splits the difference, like the mock-gospel pop of "Healin'." It was a record designed to appeal to mass audiences, the way that Bare didn't, and it worked musically and, to a lesser extent, it worked commercially, with "Sleep Tight" almost reaching the country Top 10. In retrospect, it seems a bit like a transitional album, a stop-gap before Bare returned to Silverstein songs, but when he did return he retained much of the rock edge of Sleeper, as well as some of its slickness.


Born: 07 April 1935 in Ironton, OH

Genre: Country

Years Active: '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s

Bobby Bare's story is nearly as fascinating as his music. Bare's mother died when he was five. His father couldn't earn enough money to feed his children, forcing the family to split up. Bare was working on a farm by the time he was 15 years old, later working in factories and selling ice cream to support himself. Building his first guitar, he began playing music in his late teens, performing with a local Ohio band in Springfield. In the late '50s, he moved out to Los Angeles. Bare's first appearance...
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Sleeper Wherever I Fall, Bobby Bare
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