Arthur Alexander (CD reissue)

Arthur Alexander

Omnivore, 2017

REVIEW BY: David Bowling


Arthur Alexander (1940-1993) is one of those artists that you have heard but may not know much about. He is best known as a songwriter, and his compositions have been recorded by the elite of the music industry, including Bob Dylan, The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Bee Gees, Otis Redding, Pearl Jam, Dusty Springfield, and a host of others.my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

He only released three studio albums during his 30-plus year career, but those releases made him a pioneer of the soul-country style of music. His best known recorded song, "You Better Move On," has been recorded and sung by countless country artists over the years..

Omnivore has now resurrected his second self-titled 1972 album. It arrives with a crystal clear sound, new liner notes by Dr. Demento, and six bonus tracks, two of which are being released for the first time.

The album was recorded in Nashville, which helped fuse his soulful approach with country music. Backed by some of Nashville's elite musicians, he helped found a new music form. It is also his most cohesive release as it had a plan rather than just assembling a number of varied songs.

The best know song is "Burning Love" by Dennis Linde, which was written especially for him. His countrified version was quickly covered by Elvis Presley and became the last top ten hit of his career. His own gospel-oriented "Thank God He Came" and Dann Penn's "Rainbow Road" is emotional peak of the album.

The album quickly disappeared due to the changing musical landscape and it never really found a niche. Four and a half decades later, it fares better as a gentle exploration of an underappreciated style. It is a fitting epitaph to a forgotten artist whose music helped shape his era.

Rating: B

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