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Ain't Life Grand (Remastered)

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Customer Reviews

Critics condescend to BOA, and they are misleading

Music critics loved to hate Black Oak Arkansas. No critic could get past Jim Dandy Mangrum's voice and vocal adventures. To me, he was a countrified version of Captain Beefheart. Compare the two closely, I dare you. It'll shock you. The band wrote some highly original music, some that was derivative of the Allmans, and some that was forgettable. Anyone who ever saw Jim Dandy and mates live never forgot it. They were a high-energy act that struggled to put the energy on vinyl. In my view, this was the best attempt. "Taxman" isn't just a decent cover, it's the best one. I'm a big Beatles fan, but I never listen to the original version of "Taxman," it was a mere curiosity. This studio version and the great one on Live! Mutha are addictive. "Fancy Nancy," "Rebel," "Back Door Man" and "Cryin' Shame" were terrific live showpieces that sound polished and energetic here. I am a big fan of Jim Dandy, having seen him live in his prime. He was the embodiment of testosterone. God I wanted to be him. At first, his growls, howls and whines were strange and amusing. Over time, I've come to enjoy the almost-inexplicable character of his voice. It's an acquired taste.

A diamond in the rough

My first exposure to BOA was Raunch 'N' Roll Live and to be honest, I hated it. For whatever reason, I bought Ain't Life Grand (as a record way back when) and I actually liked it...a lot. The vocals are an acquired taste for sure but if you like Southern Rock, this is more than worth a listen.

I Love This Album

Aint Life Grand was my favorite album in 9th grade..ok i'm 47 now..but we were crazy little girls and we wrote a letter to this band at the time....but hey I"m excited to see it here at iTunes so I can listen to it again...I guess I really like the songs not listened to a whole lot, with my favorites being "Love Can Be Found" and "Left Life Be Good To You."...takes you back to the old days. It's just alot of fun.


Formed: 1970 in Black Oak, AR

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '70s

Southern rock veterans Black Oak Arkansas never quite achieved the level of success enjoyed by contemporaries like Lynyrd Skynyrd and the Allman Brothers, but have remained a cult band thanks to their raw, primitive energy and the testosterone-fueled antics of lead vocalist/showman James "Big Jim Dandy" Mangrum. Named for Mangrum's hometown, Black Oak Arkansas eventually built up a solid following through incessant touring and enjoyed a run of ten charting albums between 1971 and 1976. The band also...
Full Bio

Top Albums and Songs by Black Oak Arkansas

Ain't Life Grand (Remastered), Black Oak Arkansas
View in iTunes
  • $9.99
  • Genres: Rock, Music, Hard Rock, Southern Rock, Arena Rock
  • Released: May 1975

Customer Ratings


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