The Sam Phillips Years: Sun Records Curated By Record Store Day: Vol. 9

Various Artists

ORG Music, 2022

REVIEW BY: Tom Haugen

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: 11/19/2022

With the ninth installment of the “Sun Records Curated by Record Store Day” series we're treated to 12 tracks produced by the Sun Records founder Sam Phillips, and including some pretty legendary artists that we're all familiar with.my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

Sonny Burgess starts the listen with the rousing and animated “We Wanna Boogie,” where soulful brass and dancing keys complement the lively vocals. Johnny Cash follows with his inimitable pipes guiding the playful country rocker that is “Big River,” and it isn't long until The Miller Sisters bring their fluid vocal harmonies to the quick shuffling of “Someday You Will Pay.”

The first half of the record ends with Rosco Gordon's rowdy, piano rocker “Booted,” and the more cautious and powerful “Ooo Wee Baby,” where Little Milton uses his expressive pipes superbly in the blues and R&B climate.

Side B makes an immediate impression with Roy Orbison's swift and jangly “Claudette,” as well as the firm piano, bright brass and gritty singing on “Straighten Up Baby” by James Cotton.

Nearing the end, Pinetop Perkins contributes his conversational style of singing to the raw blues of “Pinetop's Boogie Woogie,” while “So Ashamed” by Charlie Feathers heads right into rockabilly territory with its honky-tonk nods.

Fittingly, seeing as how he just passed, Jerry Lee Lewis holds down the final and most luminous track, a very vibrant version of “When The Saints Go Marching In,” where he retains the spiritual quality of the original and adds his patented vocals and acrobatic piano skills.

Rating: B+

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