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The Very Best Of

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Album Review

Whether this 17-song compilation represents the very best of Johnny Bond is an arguable point, since it only includes material from 1955-1974, and none of his big hits from the late 1940s and early 1950s. For the period it covers, it does a decent job, emphasizing the rockabilly-tinged material he did in the late 1950s and early 1960s (particularly "Hot Rod Lincoln," which opens up the collection). The Top 30 pop hit "Hot Rod Lincoln," actually a cover of a 1955 single by Charlie Ryan, was the best thing he did in this mold; other tracks from this period included novelties ("The Way a Star Is Born" is pretty close to Bobby Bare's "The All American Boy"), variations of "Hot Rod Lincoln" ("Side Car Cycle"), honky-tonk-styled cuts that sounded close to Johnny Horton ("Wild Cat Baby"), country swing (Sheb Wooley's "Louisiana Swing"), even a bluesy cover of "The Tijuana Jail." There are some less distinguished, more mainstream country efforts from the 1960s and early 1970s, including his tacky smash "Ten Little Bottles."


Born: 01 June 1915 in Enville, OK

Genre: Country

Years Active: '30s, '40s, '50s, '60s, '70s

Johnny Bond had several successful facets to a career that lasted over 30 years. As a member of the Jimmy Wakely Trio and as a session musician, he was an important support musician in dozens of B Westerns, working alongside Wakely, Tex Ritter, and Johnny Mack Brown. As a songwriter, he was responsible for several compositions that became country standards, including "Cimarron," "I Wonder Where You Are Tonight," "Conversation With a Gun," "Tomorrow Never Comes," and "I'll Step Aside," which became...
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The Very Best Of, Johnny Bond
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