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Wilma Lee and Stoney Cooper - Heartbreack Street [Righteous/Cherry Red - 2010]

Wilma Lee and Stoney Cooper were a husband and wife duo who in the late 1950’s and early 1960’s  earned a name for themselves with their often righteous and god fearing mix of  country, bluegrass and gospel music. This compilation brings together some of their best, offten quirky & morose songcraft in a highly enjoyable twenty five track collection.

The tracks go from: swaying and morose, yet memorable country rock meets bluegrass with joint male/female duet singing and fiddle whines or sails. Onto to deep male voiced and quite swirl female vocal lined buoyant bluegrass hoe- downs. Onto country waltz meets gospel wonderings with twanging guitar, slowed honky tonky paino wonderings and rising yet sombre joint male and female vocals singing about "black sheep returning to the fold". The whole collection  is very enjoyable and consistent though-out, but I think the highlight here has to be the very bizarre last track ‘The Story of The Three Nails’ which finds Mr  Stoney Cooper telling the tale of the three nails that crucified Jesus- with his spoken word voice simmering with gospel  power over  the great goosebump rising church organ wonders.

‘Heartbreak Street’ is a highly worthwhile collection of this duos distinctive, god fearing and often morose mix of country, bluegrass and gospel. I can see appealing to anyone who enjoys earthy, righteous and often quirky song writing fare that has a distinctive country and died in the wool southern USA feel about it.

Rating: 4 out of 5Rating: 4 out of 5Rating: 4 out of 5Rating: 4 out of 5Rating: 4 out of 5

Roger Batty
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