“Pieces Of The Sky” by Emmylou Harris - album review

features in: Album Chart of 1975Album Chart of the Decade: 1970s1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die external-link.png

TJR says

The second LP from the 27-year-old arrived in February '75, underlining her folk-singer-turned-country-gal position, five years after her solo debut. Having played a key role in Gram Parson's “GP” (1973) and “Grievous Angel” (1974) she dusted herself down after his untimely death and got re-focused on her own career. Such was her talent and potential that she was able to attract a crack band, with the help of producer Brian Ahern, who had done well for pop country singer Anne Murray. This, for me, pretty much ensures that it's ruined before it starts. The session band included two members of Team Elvis - James Burton (guitars) and Glen Hardin (piano). Hardin, formerly of The Crickets, also assisted with the arrangements. Other enticed luminaries included Bernie Leadon (acoustic guitar, bass, banjo, dobro) of The Eagles, Bill Payne (piano) of Little Feat and Herb Pedersen (acoustic guitar, 12-string guitar, banjo, backing vocals) formerly of The Dillards.

She includes only one of her own songs this time around, “Boulder To Birmingham”, in which she openly grieves for Gram, her lost love: “I would rock my soul in the bosom of Abraham, I would hold my life in his saving grace, I would walk all the way from Boulder to Birmingham, If I thought I could see, I could see your face”. Side one's covers include “Too Far Gone” (Lucille Starr, 1967) and “If I Could Only Win Your Love” (The Louvin Brothers, 1958). It's covers all the way on side two with “Bottle Let Me Down” (Merle Haggard and The Strangers, 1966), “Sleepless Nights” (The Everly Brothers, 1960), “Coat Of Many Colors” (Dolly Parton, 1971), “For No One” (The Beatles, 1966) and “Queen Of The Silver Dollar” (Dr. Hook & The Medicine Show, 1972). Opening one-two aside, the set is largely too soft for my tastes, albeit technically excellent throughout.

The Jukebox Rebel

A1 [03:18] 5.7.png Emmylou Harris - Bluebird Wine (Rodney Crowell) Country
A2 [04:05] 6.3.png Emmylou Harris - Too Far Gone (Billy Sherrill) Country
A3 [02:36] 4.3.png Emmylou Harris - If I Could Only Win Your Love (Charlie Louvin, Ira Louvin) Country
A4 [03:33] 4.0.png Emmylou Harris - Boulder To Birmingham (Emmylou Harris, Bill Danoff) Country
A5 [04:44] 4.5.png Emmylou Harris - Before Believing (Danny Flowers) Songwriter
B1 [03:16] 4.7.png Emmylou Harris - The Bottle Let Me Down (Merle Haggard) Country
B2 [03:25] 3.0.png Emmylou Harris - Sleepless Nights (Felice Bryant, Boudleaux Bryant) Country
B3 [03:42] 4.7.png Emmylou Harris - Coat Of Many Colors (Dolly Parton) Country
B4 [03:40] 4.8.png Emmylou Harris - For No One (John Lennon, Paul McCartney) Songwriter
B5 [05:14] 5.0.png Emmylou Harris - Queen Of The Silver Dollar (Shel Silverstein) Country

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