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Author Topic:  Suite Steel reissue a disappointment
Rich Upright


From:
Florida, USA
Post Posted 7 May 2018 7:02 pm     Reply with quote

Just got my reissue copy of "Suite Steel". I had it on vinyl over 40 years ago & I must say...it was more enjoyable back then. To me, the playing on it seems,well, boring & uninspiring. The steel tones were just lacking in something. I had not heard this since the 70s & forgot what tunes were on it. I was hoping to hear the steel being used in more of a country context, but 3 Beatle instrumentals,couple of 70s pop tunes, and, I mean SERIOUSLY...Sunshine of Your Love as a steel instrumental? Really??! Dunno who was in charge of picking the material for this back in the day, but I'm thinking maybe they were trying to influence younger people to get into steel. I mean..."Everybody's Talking??" Think they coulda done better with this one back in the day. Oh well; whaddaya want for $10?!
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Joachim Kettner


From:
Germany
Post Posted 8 May 2018 2:36 am     Reply with quote

Quote:
Just got my reissue copy of "Suite Steel". I had it on vinyl over 40 years ago & I must say...it was more enjoyable back then.

That's normal. How many times did I buy a re-issue and was disapointed. I guess that has to something with aging.
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Donny Hinson


From:
Glen Burnie, Md. U.S.A.
Post Posted 8 May 2018 8:40 am     Reply with quote

Quote:
I was hoping to hear the steel being used in more of a country context...


Wrong! That album was done explicitly to be different than the typical "whiny country stuff" that pedal steel had been already doing for a couple of decades. They wanted to appeal to young people, not the old "Mansion On The Hill", and "Way To Survive" crowd. I have the vinyl, and though I haven't heard the new release, no doubt that remixing has changed the sound from what it was, originally. It's easily in my TOP 10 list of pedal steel albums.
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Joachim Kettner


From:
Germany
Post Posted 8 May 2018 9:12 am     Reply with quote

I wished I've said what you have said Donny! I got the vinyl ten years ago and I think the song choices are excellent.
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Jim Cohen


From:
Philadelphia, PA
Post Posted 8 May 2018 9:24 am     Reply with quote

Yes, it opened up steel to a more modern, then-current sound. It's not current anymore and can certainly sound dated; no surprise there.

But there are some gems. Buddy's Wichita Lineman is still one of the most gorgeous things ever played on our beloved instrument. Twin steel guitars playing weaving lines, as in Yesterday, are rarely heard even today, and were really nicely done by E and Pete. JayDee's Muddy Mississippi Line has been a long favorite of mine; I'm hoping this re-release will encourage him to add it back into his steel show repertoire. And as for Everybody's Talkin', it remains (to my knowledge) the only C6 recording - and in a very hip, jazzy, Chalker-like vein, no less - by Rusty Young, so is historic in that sense. It demonstrated how capable a player he was, even in those early days, and outside of the straight E9 country sound he was playing with Poco. I had tried to lure him back into playing some C6 jazz again as a guest artist on Jimbeaux's Blues, on my Pedal Steel Jazz CD, but I couldn't persuade him. He said it had been way too long since he had played in that style. But at least we have his recording to enjoy, now in a convenient CD format.
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Dave Mudgett


From:
Central Pennsylvania
Post Posted 8 May 2018 9:37 am     Reply with quote

Yeah, I dunno. To each his own, but it's certainly not hard to find lots of pedal steel in country music. But not so much in other styles, especially back in 1970.

This also has that great rendition of Wichita Lineman by Buddy Emmons. And Yesterday with both Buddy and Sneaky Pete. And others. It's its own thing - different but still cool as far as I'm concerned.

Ya' can pre-listen to a few of these on youtube to see if it's for you.
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Greg Cutshaw


From:
Corry, PA, USA
Post Posted 8 May 2018 11:12 am     Reply with quote

Blackbird is my favorite tune on this album. It's also done in quite a unique style and arrangement.
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Skip Edwards


From:
LA,CA
Post Posted 8 May 2018 11:47 pm     Reply with quote

Glad to see it re-released. It was just as much a seminal album to a lot of us as Sweetheart of The Rodeo was. I couldn't listen to it enough when it came out.
Blackbird...yes... quintessential Sneaky Pete. And that classic ZB tone from Rusty Young. I love Prodigal...played it at the PHX show a few years ago. btw, JayDee played Muddy Mississippi Line in PHX a couple years ago, and I agree... it should be a staple of his set.
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Richard Sinkler


From:
Oakdale, California
Post Posted 9 May 2018 6:13 am     Reply with quote

My favorite is " L'hiver Sur la Plage" (Buddy Emmons). The emotion that Buddy put into that song blows me away.
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Jim Cohen


From:
Philadelphia, PA
Post Posted 9 May 2018 6:14 am     Reply with quote

Richard Sinkler wrote:
My favorite is " L'hiver Sur la Plage" (Buddy Emmons). The emotion that Buddy put into that song blows me away.


Yes! I'd almost forgotten about that one. Beautiful! I've thought about learning that one and may do it eventually.
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Carl Mesrobian


From:
Salem, Massachusetts, USA
Post Posted 9 May 2018 6:42 am     Reply with quote

I'm shedding Wichita Lineman for a gig on the 15th. Cool stuff! Too many nuances, not enough time Smile

I just ordered the reissue and look forward to it. Pigeonholing the pedal steel into "just country" is wrong in my opinion.
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Mike Neer


From:
NJ
Post Posted 9 May 2018 9:45 am     Reply with quote

Opportunities for these cats to make recordings out of the box/norm were rare. You have to appreciate that you get a glimpse into another side of them.
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Richard Sinkler


From:
Oakdale, California
Post Posted 9 May 2018 2:32 pm     Reply with quote

Another great one with Emmons, Hughey, Garrish, Hicks and Crawford.



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scott murray


From:
Asheville, NC
Post Posted 9 May 2018 5:29 pm     Reply with quote

I believe the whole point of the record was to showcase the steel in a pop/rock format and get away from traditional country songs.

it contains some of Buddy Emmons' best work in my opinion. as others have said his rendition of Wichita Lineman is one of the all-time great interpretations.

the duets are quite interesting too.

the album also features Clarence White on guitar, although he doesn't really shine on this one. hard to tell he's even there

I can see how maybe some of the tunes don't quite hold up almost 50 years later, but you must consider the era it was released. you've got to hand it to them for putting the steel front and center and trying some new and exciting things, at least at that time.
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John Macy


From:
Denver, CO/Rockport, TX
Post Posted 11 May 2018 4:07 pm     Reply with quote

(I’m playing a session right now with the guitar that’s on the cover of the Nashville Bar Association record...)
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Donny Hinson


From:
Glen Burnie, Md. U.S.A.
Post Posted 13 May 2018 3:06 pm     Reply with quote

John...wood necks?
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Jack Stanton


From:
Somewhere in the swamps of Jersey
Post Posted 15 May 2018 4:08 pm     Reply with quote

Turn Any Corner-When Buddy comes back in with the Leslie on ( no doubt brought into the studio by Rusty), I just can't sit still. There's some great stuff on that album.
Buddy's tone is amazing, bright and bitting, but still fat.
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Jack Stanton


From:
Somewhere in the swamps of Jersey
Post Posted 15 May 2018 4:08 pm     Reply with quote

I'll second that.

Last edited by Jack Stanton on 16 May 2018 4:26 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Joachim Kettner


From:
Germany
Post Posted 16 May 2018 10:27 am     Reply with quote

Btw, it's Jim Yester of the Association amongst the back-up guitar players.
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Richard Sinkler


From:
Oakdale, California
Post Posted 17 May 2018 8:16 am     Reply with quote

John Macy wrote:
(I’m playing a session right now with the guitar that’s on the cover of the Nashville Bar Association record...)


Cool! I believe it was Hughey that told me that was Sonny's guitar. Were any of his licks left on it?
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Bill Cunningham


From:
Atlanta, Ga. USA
Post Posted 17 May 2018 4:35 pm     Reply with quote

Since John Macy has not commented on the wood neck Emmons guitar, I will since I asked him about it on FB a while back. John does have Sonny Garrish's mica body, wood neck, Emmons. I think he bought it from Palenscar. I know I saw the guitar when I stopped in Pali's shop maybe +/- a couple of years ago when I was in SoCal on my day job.
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Skip Edwards


From:
LA,CA
Post Posted 17 May 2018 10:39 pm     Reply with quote

Yes, John got it at Pali's shop, and he got it from Tim Fleming. I've played that gtr, and even with dead strings it sang like an Emmons should. Crawford cluster, and chrome 705's...and all the mojo you could ever ask for. I thought about snagging it, but I'm glad that John got it.
I'm still a bit jell, though...
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Chris Templeton


From:
The Green Mountain State
Post Posted 19 May 2018 11:28 am     Reply with quote

For me, the two "Suite Steel" records and the "Nashville Bar Association record" not only showed what the steel can do in other types of music but also represents a rare time when there was camaraderie and a healthy competition amongst the steel guitar community. That is not to say that there weren't rivalries, jealousies and the like, but throw the I.S.G.C. into the mix and, voila! a steel guitar community!
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