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Living and Dying In 3/4 Time

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Album Review

With his second album, 1973's A White Sport Coat and a Pink Crustacean, Jimmy Buffett broke into the country LPs chart, courtesy of a minor hit single, "The Great Filing Station Holdup." That would seem to mark him as a promising up-and-coming country artist, with his third album, Living and Dying in ¾ Time, the next step. But Buffett exhibits an ambivalent attitude toward his career and the music business in general in the LP's songs, most of which he wrote. In fact, the best of them is "Come Monday," a melancholy ballad about being on the road and missing a loved one. "I spent four lonely days/In a brown L.A. haze/And I just want you back by my side," he sings plaintively. That theme has been explored so much by songwriters that it's hard to find a new way to go at it, and Buffett's success is indicative of his writing talent. He devotes that talent largely to talking about how much he dislikes Nashville, notably in such songs as "Brand New Country Star" (co-written by Vernon Arnold) and "Saxophones." In the former, he castigates a product of Nashville equally capable of going country or pop (which is odd, since he himself is hardly a traditional country musician), while in the latter he complains that he can't get radio play in his hometown of Mobile, AL. It may be that Buffett is determined to make it only on his own terms, and that those terms are more those of Texas singer/songwriters like Jerry Jeff Walker and Willis Alan Ramsey (whose "Ballad of Spider John" he covers here), or Gulf Coast blues artists like those he praises in "Saxophones," than of conventional country musicians. That's fair enough, but it makes it hard to complain that you're facing resistance.

Customer Reviews

one of the best

I love this album, and its a must have for true Buffett fans. I'm from Montana, and I love all the references. I haven't been to Ringling, MT for many years, but the last time I was there, in the one bar in town (which is a lot like he describes in the song) they had every one of his albums in the Jukebox and a big photo of him on the wall. I'm not a country fan, and this album definitely has a Nashville sound, but the steel guitar work just blows my mind. I could listen to this album over and over again and never get tired of it. You could buy this album just because one of his rare radio hits is on here, but there are so many other great tunes that you will surely come to love more than Come Monday.

Buffett at his best

Great album......his best. Buffett tells a great story and puts it to even better music. Love the steel guitar.

Love the old stuff!!

i love pretty much everything buffett has ever done, but for me, you can't beat the old stuff, and this is one of his best albums, top to bottom. it's got some stuff everyone knows (track 1 & track 2), but it's compiled mostly of obscure tracks with great lyrics (tracks 6, 7, 8, 9, and 10). anyone who considers themselves, even the slightest bit, a buffett fan needs to own this album!


Born: December 25, 1946 in Pascagoula, MS

Genre: Rock

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

Jimmy Buffett translated his easygoing Gulf Coast persona into more than just a successful recording career -- he expanded into clothing, nightclubs, and literature -- but the basis of the business empire that kept him on the Fortune magazine list of highest-earning entertainers was his music. Born in southern Mississippi and raised in Alabama, Buffett moved to Nashville to try to make it in country music in the late '60s. After signing to the Barnaby label, he released one album, 1970's Down to...
Full Bio

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