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Harper Valley P.T.A.

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Album Review

The album based on the multimillion-selling title track is a fine recording that goes beyond the obvious attraction to the Tom T. Hall classic. It comes across nearly as a concept album that mirrors life in a small town in all its faults and tribulations, though not all songs make direct reference to Harper Valley. At the center of all this is the underrated voice of Jeannie C. Riley, which has the right combination of strength, sass, and vulnerability to make the songs come alive. The listener is treated to songs detailing the characters mentioned in the hit title song, such as Mr. Harper, Widow Jones (who comes across as the worst of the three), and Shirley Thompson. Musically, many of the songs seem almost a copy of "Harper Valley P.T.A," but they usually work because each has its own distinct story to tell, and the sincerity of Riley's voice reinforces the tales well. "No Brass Band" is a welcome change from the formula, and paints the detailed story of a family's dreams that go unfulfilled. There is also fine Dobro work by "Jerry Kennedy," and the production of "Shelby Singleton" keeps to a harder country sound that avoids the pitfalls of strings and unnecessary vocal backgrounds.

Customer Reviews

Amazing Voice

This album was in my parents collection and I'd listen to it and get lost in her voice. Years later and I'm still lost in her voice. I'd give it 10 stars if I could


This has what is almost considered a "June Carter" rebelness to it. Great lyrics, great rythem, awesome melody. Just an all out, flat down to the point genuine song!!


I love every song on this, especially Run Jeannie Run. I can remember playing this record as a kid...


Born: September 19, 1945 in Anson, TX

Genre: Country

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Best known for her international crossover hit "Harper Valley P.T.A.," Jeannie C. Riley was born Jeanne Carolyn Stephenson in Anson, TX, where she developed a love of country music as a girl. When she was a teenager, she made her first public performance, appearing on her uncle's jamboree show. Soon after high-school graduation, she married Mickey Riley; she wanted to become a professional musician, so she and her new husband moved to Nashville, where she performed secretarial work at Passkey Music....
Full Bio

Top Albums and Songs by Jeannie C. Riley

Harper Valley P.T.A., Jeannie C. Riley
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Customer Ratings