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Post new topic Tunes Of The Week #3 - Ralph Mooney
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Author Topic:  Tunes Of The Week #3 - Ralph Mooney
Joe Goldmark


From:
San Francisco, CA 94131
Post Posted 18 Jan 2011 11:24 am     Reply with quote

Steeler: Ralph Mooney
Artist: George Hamilton IV
LP Title: Coast-Country
Tunes: Above And Beyond, Excuse Me (I Think I've Got A Heartache)
Label: RCA LPM-3510
Year: 1966

http://www.vinylbeat.com/forum/01AboveAndBeyond.mp3

http://www.vinylbeat.com/forum/02ExcuseMeIThinkIveGotAHea.mp3



Ralph Mooney is in our thoughts and prayers at this time, so I think it's a good time to hear some of his magic playing. This is an album that slipped under the radar for most folks, but for steel players it's a treasure. Mooney gets all the solos and IMHO, plays his best West Coast style on record. It's not out front quite as much as on the early Buck Owens records, but Moon seems looser and more creative than ever. Hamilton is pretty tame and I'm guessing that producer (Bob Ferguson) probably figured that Mooney was his saving grace, so he just let him rip. Soon afterword, Mooney developed a smoother style for Haggard and a unique sound for Waylon.


Last edited by Joe Goldmark on 21 Apr 2017 7:53 am; edited 4 times in total
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Dave Zirbel


From:
Sebastopol, CA USA
Post Posted 18 Jan 2011 11:40 am     Reply with quote

Dang. Looks like something I need to find for my collection. Is it available on CD?

Thanks Joe.
Dave
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Dave Zirbel-
ZB, Fender 400 guitars, various tube and SS amps
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scott murray


From:
Asheville, NC
Post Posted 18 Jan 2011 11:47 am     Reply with quote

so good. what a sound.

can i make a request for some Buddy Charleton next? he's also in our thoughts and prayers Sad

thanks Joe
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Peter Freiberger


From:
California, USA
Post Posted 18 Jan 2011 12:03 pm     Reply with quote

Here's an original copy for $20:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/offer-listing/B004BJSRI8/ref=dp_olp_used?ie=UTF8&qid=1295380899&sr=8-1&condition=used
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Tony Glassman


From:
The Great Northwest
Post Posted 18 Jan 2011 12:14 pm     Reply with quote

Joe.....great find. Mooney sounds killer, a little more bluesy than w/ Buck.
Keep'em coming!
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Billy Wilson


From:
El Cerrito, California, USA
Post Posted 18 Jan 2011 12:15 pm     Reply with quote

I like the hotter steel mix on this. Are those played on a Fender steel?
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Dave Zirbel


From:
Sebastopol, CA USA
Post Posted 18 Jan 2011 1:29 pm     Reply with quote

Most likely a Fender 1000 since it was recorded in 1966. Very Happy Those axes have a bit more edge to them, like a Telecaster (IMHO of coarse)
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Dave Zirbel-
ZB, Fender 400 guitars, various tube and SS amps
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Jim Robbins


From:
Ontario, Canada
Post Posted 18 Jan 2011 8:32 pm     Reply with quote

Awesome -- they let him off the leash! Thanks, Joe.
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chris ivey


From:
california - r.i.p.
Post Posted 19 Jan 2011 4:48 pm     Reply with quote

neato. hearing these tunes makes me wonder how much buck's style was created by buck and don, or just by the era and session guys. was buck just a copycat or was it the other way around?
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Billy Wilson


From:
El Cerrito, California, USA
Post Posted 19 Jan 2011 7:34 pm     Reply with quote

Ralph's got a hit tune all over the air waves at the moment. The Volkswagon commercial with the Wynn Stewart tune Another Day Another Dollar is what you call a "hit" commercial. Being a TV fan, I'm glad to say I'm hearing it often!!
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Dan Tyack


From:
Olympia, WA USA
Post Posted 19 Jan 2011 7:45 pm     Reply with quote

Hey Joe,

I'm wondering if this was not recorded in Bakersfield. I don't hear the hyped top end and too much reverb that were hallmarks of that town.

Great steel playing! Very similar to the original, but better tone (IMHO)
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Joe Goldmark


From:
San Francisco, CA 94131
Post Posted 19 Jan 2011 10:00 pm     Reply with quote

Hi Guys,

Thanks for listening. Dan, I'm almost positive this is a Nashville production. It's produced by Bob Ferguson on RCA, and I've never heard of either him or the company doing country sessions out west in that era. Billy Wilson, I've been meaning to say hi. I'm glad you're digging these tunes. Scott, I didn't realize that Buddy Charleton was sick again. I have no problem finding something with him for next week.

Joe
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John Robel


From:
colbert washington
Post Posted 19 Jan 2011 10:49 pm     Reply with quote

Thanks Joe, for the links. I loved the twangbangers at the Tractor. Meant to ask you that night " how come when I pick my pleasures, I get vertigo? John
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Dan Tyack


From:
Olympia, WA USA
Post Posted 19 Jan 2011 10:56 pm     Reply with quote

Thanks Joe,

As much as I love those Bakersfield recordngs, the engineers did like to jack up the twang knob on the steel. I talked to Tom Brumley a number of years back, and he said he hated the tone on all the Buck recorded cuts. I told him I thought his best recorded tone with Buck was on the Live at Carnagie Hall record, and he agreed.
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Dave Zirbel


From:
Sebastopol, CA USA
Post Posted 20 Jan 2011 6:18 am     Reply with quote

I heard Buck requested the tracks be recorded with lots of high end so they would sound good over those crummy AM radios, which usually sounded muffled.
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Dave Zirbel-
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James Allison


From:
California, USA
Post Posted 20 Jan 2011 4:18 pm     Reply with quote

Hey Joe.. I too was saddened at the news of Buddy Charelton's Illness. I have some great stories I'l share with you someday. I did some recording and playing with him in DC back in the the early 70's. He was amazing. One of those players that made you think "how in the hell did he do that?" I will dig out some tracks and try to post them. I've been trying to play my MSA for two years now and I've never been so humbled. There isn't a steeler on the Forum good or bad, working or not that needs to worry about me for at least for the next 20 or so years. By then I should be OK..................
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George Duncan Sypert


From:
Colo Spgs, Co, USA
Post Posted 21 Jan 2011 5:51 pm     Mp3 Reply with quote

Finally one of these that I can open. I don't what the difference is in this one verus the other two posted. This one opened right up and was a pleasent surprise. I would have never suspected this to be George IV. Good recording.

George
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Joe Goldmark


From:
San Francisco, CA 94131
Post Posted 22 Mar 2011 9:22 am     Reply with quote

This is the the tune of the week again in honor of Moon. Had to do it.

Joe
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Eddie Lange


From:
Nashville, TN
Post Posted 22 Mar 2011 2:30 pm     Reply with quote

Guys, I hate to even say this but Joe, do we have confirmation that this is Ralph for sure on these cuts? I really do hate to even mention it because we are all missing him so much right now but I have never heard of Ralph doing any sessions in Nashville before he was with Waylon. That doesnt mean that he didnt, it just would've flown completely under the radar! This is most definitely a Nashville band and I just dont see Bob Ferguson or RCA bringing him in for just a regular old, everyday session back in those years. Even with it being a West Coast Country album. It doesnt sound "quite" like him during those years and maybe could it be one of our 60's Nashville heroes doing his best Moon impression? I could be WAY off base here, so please let me know when to shut up! They are wonderful versions though. George the IV is a true gentleman and this is a shining example of the style that Mr. Mooney blessed us with for so many years. May he rest in peace.
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Billy Tonnesen


From:
R.I.P., Buena Park, California
Post Posted 22 Mar 2011 3:13 pm     Reply with quote

Eddie:

There was a Steel Player out here on the West Coast named Frank Arquette who played very similiar to Moon. But this sounds like Moon to me.

Billy T.
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Joe Goldmark


From:
San Francisco, CA 94131
Post Posted 22 Mar 2011 8:54 pm     Reply with quote

Hi Eddie,

I can understand your suspicions and all your reasons are valid. However, the liner notes by Ralph Emery say:

"George likes this kind of country music which has a simple, distinct beat and a lack of background voices (most unusual for the period), and the wailing steel-guitar sound of Ralph Mooney who perhaps as much as anyone else made "Coast-Country" music popular. Ralph was flown from Las Vegas to play steel guitar for this album."

"It was while playing in Las Vegas in '63 that George Hamilton IV became keenly interested in this style of country music. Every night, after his own performance at the Mint Club, George would go to the "Lariat Club" to hear Wynn Stewart and the band with Ralph Mooney playing steel guitar. After listening night after night, George got the idea for this album. His first thought was to do the album in Las Vegas but, due to other commitments, it couldn't be done. It was then he decided to bring Ralph Mooney to Nashville to work with a group of Nashville musicians, some of whom had played in Las Vegas and had come in contact with the "Coast-Country" sound."

Joe
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Eddie Lange


From:
Nashville, TN
Post Posted 23 Mar 2011 1:08 pm     Reply with quote

Joe-

Yeah, just like I said, Moon sure played his butt off on that session!!

I guess I was just starting another one of those good, steel guitar conspiracy theories or something like that. I got to back Mr. Hamilton several times when I was with Bill Anderson and I know one thing for sure, he really loves good steel. Course he never heard that much from your's truly. Anyway, thank you for this treasure............
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Fred Jack


From:
Bastrop, Texas 78602
Post Posted 23 Mar 2011 3:02 pm     Moon Reply with quote

Moon told me on,several occasions, that they phoned and ask him to come to Nashville and record this album.That is Moon and it was recorded in Nashville.
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Joachim Kettner


From:
Germany
Post Posted 28 Apr 2017 10:26 pm     Reply with quote

Here's a nice version with Paul Franklin:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QMoAv3Yfy08
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ajm


From:
Los Angeles
Post Posted 29 Apr 2017 7:39 am     Reply with quote

FYI: Topic resurrected after 6 years.

And.......

That Paul Franklin version was from the Rodney Crowell album "Diamonds and Dirt" that came out in 1988.
I love it to this day.
It was very overlooked at awards time, and AFAIK didn't win any major awards.
If you haven't heard it, and you like country (on this forum, what am I saying???), I don't think you'd be disappointed.
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