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Lyle Lovett and His Large Band

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By the time his third album was released in 1990, Lyle Lovett had devised a term for his unique blend of Americana-country-crooner music. He didn’t make big band music; he made “Large Band” music. The corresponding album fleshes out the austerities of his first two efforts by adding a full-fledged horn section for a refreshingly out-of-place rendition of “The Blues Walk,” a flash of bluesy bebop written by trumpeter Clifford Brown in 1955. The cabaret-performance vibe runs throughout the program, from its blues (“Here I Am”) and jazz ballads (“Good Intentions”) to its handsome turns into country classicism (“I Married Her Just Because She Looks Like You”). A boldly pronoun-unaltered rendition of Tammy Wynette’s “Stand By Your Man” is just one of many indications that Lovett wasn’t interested in the old conventions. He was, however, fond of the old sounds. In imitation of a long all-night jam session, this joyful album winds down with a series of quiet acoustic numbers. The best is “Which Way Does That Old Pony Run,” a simple cowboy ballad played with the smoldering sensuality of Al Green.


Born: November 1, 1957 in Klein, TX

Genre: Country

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

Lyle Lovett was one of the most distinctive and original singer/songwriters to emerge during the '80s. Though he was initially labeled as a country singer, the tag never quite fit him. Lovett had more in common with '70s singer/songwriters like Guy Clark, Jesse Winchester, Randy Newman, and Townes Van Zandt, combining a talent for incisive, witty lyrical detail with an eclectic array of music, ranging from country and folk to big-band swing and traditional pop. Lovett's literate, multi-layered songs...
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