Rick Nelson Cosmic American / Country Rock - where do I start?

Love Rick Nelson, and he dabbled in country/rock for a minute-an album or two... can anyone point the way for me on which albums he went in this direction?

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Hi. Bright Lights and Country Music and Country Fever were his two explicitly "country" albums. Definitely some good stuff on there. I always love Ricky's voice, nothing spectacular about it but a pleasant tone nonetheless.

Hi Joseph, I missed your post, so I'm catching up here. Actually, Rick's roots were country-rock, formerly termed Rock-a-Billy. It can be argued that many of his early records were country-rock. He wanted to re-capture the Yellow Sun sound and loved Carl Perkins more than Elvis' music.

The links below represent Rick's country period....The first two records, as was stated, are the most explicitly country. He even recorded Willie's songs before he was a known commodity in and around Nashville  

The best of the lot is Live at the Troubadour.   The rest are uneven, but still good enough to make anyone a fan and to understand Rick's country leanings. 



Bright Lights/Country Fever



Live at the Troubadour



Rudy the Fifth and Rick Sings Nelson



Garden Party/Windfall



These represent Rick's second creative peak and his influence on the country rock of his times and his pioneer work as a key figure in Americana music today.  Sadly, he is mostly known now, thanks Rolling Stone, as a 'teen idol' with Elvis envy, which couldn't be farther from the truth. Rick was very disappointed about RS's characterization of his legacy.    

James Burton played lead on everything Nelson recorded between ~1958 and 1967. Enough said.

Correct, Burton is certainly the best guitarist

I've ever seen and I've seen a few.

Thank you, Mark, Terry and Hal :) so far I have gotten half of Rick's country rock phase(?) Garden Party and Windfall being the best..Rick sings Nelson/Rudy the fifth secondly..wonder why these albums were not more popular..hmm maybe because he didn't want to be an oldies act? Dunno:-/thanks guys:)

Hey Joseph, Sounds like you're making through the collection. I don't think you can really Rick's country music a phase. That sounds like he its something he went through and outgrew. Actually, and I'm going to write more about this, he is a pioneer of country-rock dating back to his decision to make Yellow Sun style records in '58. I'd maybe call it his 'country period.'   But, the music was really always there. The last time I saw him was the year that he died and he was doing almost all rockabilly for that show.  You're right about not wanting to be an oldies act...his message to Chuck Berry...'if memories were all I sang, I'd rather drive a truck.'  

And I highly recommend Rick Nelson In Concert at The Troubadour..it's the best...http://www.amazon.com/In-Concert-The-Troubadour-1969/dp/B004FEDV9Y


sorry for going on and on!  

With that phrase, we can truly say he..surpassed Elvis? Dang..

In some ways, maybe....Hardly anyone even came close to Elvis' Yellow Sun/Memphis session in the 50's.  But, in terms of staying focused on the music and control over his own material, Rick had it over the King.  Elvis' spent his last decade mostly covering songs like "Never Been To Spain," "Proud Mary," and "Just Can't Help Believing."  



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Created by No Depression Feb 17, 2009 at 9:06pm. Last updated by No Depression Sep 24, 2012.