Gram Parsons compilation due

May 22, 2006

Gram Parsons and Nudie Cohen

Gram Parsons and Nudie Cohen

I’m amazed: who’d a thunk it? CMT, or Country Music Television, has a website, and featured in it is a tribute to one of my old heroes, Gram Parsons.

I think the argument can easily be made that Gram Parsons was to country-rock what Hank Williams was to mainstream country. Each simultaneously catapulted a musical genre light years ahead of what it had been, and each left a romantic image of a brilliant but doomed wastrel country poet who died young. Hank was 29 when he succumbed to too much dope and liquor in the back seat of his Cadillac, and Gram was 26 when an overdose of dope and liquor claimed his young life in a motel room in the California desert. [Editorial Director Chet Flippo.]

k d langWith the exception of Emmy Lou Harris, Gram has hardly received the respect he deserves from the country music world. Perhaps this article is the turning point. It doesn’t tell any of us Parsons experts anything new, but it DOES tell us that there is a new GP documentary and 3 CD box set due on the shelves June 20, 2006. The 3 CDs are his Reprise recordings.

Who knows? Perhaps now they will come to their senses about k d lang as one of the greatest country artists ever. (She didn’t have the patience or artistic sloth to stay and wait for approval and moved on.) I heard k d with the LA Philharmonic two summers ago. She is at a new level. She has always been a great performer, but she has matured into a great artist. I can’t help but think that her passion for Buddhism has centered her into a new level. I anxiously await her next project.

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