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Sweetheart of the Rodeo

The Byrds

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iTunes Editors’ Notes

With the addition of Gram Parsons, the Byrds took a definitive step into country music. The group had previously aired this side — Porter Wagoner’s “A Satisfied Mind” on their second album Turn! Turn! Turn!, “Mr. Spaceman” from Fifth Dimension — but they’d never completely submerged themselves into a single genre. Parsons wrote the two original compositions, his sublime signature tune regarding his southern upbringing “Hickory Wind,” and the upbeat pedal-steel driven “One Hundred Years From Now.” For the rest, the group recruited from all over. Dylan’s “You Ain’t Goin’ Nowhere” and “Nothing Was Delivered” (which later appeared on his Basement Tapes), the Louvin Brothers’ “The Christian Life,” Merle Haggard’s “Life in Prison” and Woody Guthrie’s “Pretty Boy Floyd” were smart, informed choices but much out of sync with the rock mainstream of 1968 where psychedelia was winding down as sonic innovations from Jimi Hendrix and political unrest in the world at large were surfacing in the harder edge of the music. At the time, the album’s C&W direction doomed the band commercially. Years later, it’s considered one of the most influential albums of all-time, attracting new generations to explore the connections between rock and country music. Excellent outtakes featuring Parsons have been added to the subsequent reissues.

Customer Reviews

Gorgeous

I'm a bit surprised to see that no one's taken the time to comment on this album. In my eyes, it ranks high in the greatest achivements of the 60s (only comming behind that of Pet Sounds, The Velvet Underground & Nico and In A Silent Way), breaking ground and moving in a progresive, honest and emotional level. The album is brillaint and beautiful, never pretentious or over the top (as many not so humbled ventures into psychedelica were).

Sweetheart of the Rodeo

Its a good thing they met Gram Parsons, if they hadn't, they wouldn't have created one of the greatest country rock albums of all time. This album was originally suposed to be a retrospective of american music. Starting in the 30's with Woody Guthrie and what not, and moving up through the years to modern (60's) music. But I guess they decided against that idea. This is a great album... buy it.

Sweat Heart of the Rodeo

Bravest rock album ever recorder and a commercial disaster during it's time while it was one of the most important albums of the late sixties. Anyone with a cowboy hat and an electric guitar playing country rock owes a nod to this masterpiece. Best listened to in it's entirety.

Biography

Formed: 1964 in Los Angeles, CA

Genre: Rock

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

Although they only attained the huge success of the Beatles, Rolling Stones, and the Beach Boys for a short time in the mid-'60s, time has judged the Byrds to be nearly as influential as those groups in the long run. They were not solely responsible for devising folk-rock, but they were certainly more responsible than any other single act (Dylan included) for melding the innovations and energy of the British Invasion with the best lyrical and musical elements of contemporary folk music. The jangling,...
Full Bio