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Year-Round Cowboy

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Album Review

Legendary crooner Gene Autry was never really a cowboy, but he dutifully represented America's vision of the more wholesome side of the Old West. Varese Sarabande's Year-Round Cowboy: Songs for the Whole Year collects 25 of the most beloved holiday classics by "America's Favorite Singing Cowboy," 15 of which have never made it to CD previously. Culled from films, the popular Gene Autry Melody Ranch Radio Show, and his original Columbia recordings, Year-Round Cowboy features classics from Christmas ("Here Comes Santa Claus [Right Down Santa Claus Lane]"), Easter ("Peter Cottontail"), the Fourth of July ("Yankee Doodle Boy"), Thanksgiving ("Little Johnny Pilgrim"), and even Tax Day ("I Paid My Income Tax Today"). Fans looking for cowboy classics like "Don't Fence Me In" and "Back in the Saddle Again" would be better off picking up Columbia/Legacy's excellent Essential Gene Autry: 1933-1946, but anyone looking to relive a little childhood seasonal magic will find much to love here.


Born: September 29, 1907 in Tioga Springs, TX

Genre: Country

Years Active: '20s, '30s, '40s, '50s, '60s, '70s

Gene Autry was more than a musician. His music, coupled with his careers in movies and on radio and television, made him a part of the mythos that has made up the American identity for the past hundred years -- John Wayne with a little bit of Sam Houston and Davy Crockett all rolled into one, with a great singing voice and an ear for music added on. He defined country music for two generations of listeners, cowboy songs for much of the 20th century, and American music for much of the world. He was...
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