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Mama Tried by Merle Haggard
Released: Jan 1968
Label: Capitol Nashville
Released in 1968, Mama Tried is steeped in the Bakerfield sound that Haggard help put in the map. Haggard sounds most authentic when singing from experience, so naturally, songs about disappointing people, messing up and doing time are found here in abundance. Simplistic in its production, highlights such as the title cut, "Lil' Ol' Wine Drinker Me" and "Teach Me To Forget" have little more than shuffling drums, a twanging guitar and the occasional honky-tonk piano to accompany Haggard's vocals, and yet, because those vocals are so honest, that's all that's needed. A true '60s classic.
Linda Ryan