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Grifter's Hymnal


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Audio CD, March 26, 2012
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Grifter's Hymnal + Snake Farm + A: Enlightenment B: Endarkenment (Hint: There Is No C) (Dig)
Price for all three: $37.17

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (March 26, 2012)
  • Original Release Date: 2012
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Bordello Records
  • ASIN: B0077SXH1M
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (53 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #34,840 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Coricidin Bottle
2. South of the River
3. Lazaru
4. New Year s Eve at the Gates of Hell
5. Moss and Flowers
6. Red Badge of Courage
7. Train Yard
8. Coochy Coochy
9. Mother Blues
10. Henhouse
11. Count My Blessings
12. Ask God

Editorial Reviews

The opening track of The Grifter s Hymnal, Coricidin Bottle , tells you everything you need to know about Ray Wylie Hubbard in just under two minutes. He s the kind of scrapper poet with the devil-may-care wherewithal to write both lay down a groove like a monkey getting off and shakes the mortal coil round my amaranthine soul into the same song- and the lethal charm and chops to pull it off. The album really does have a lot of attitude, Hubbard proclaims. The sound he was aiming for-and bulls eyed- recalls many of his favorite rock records of the 60 s, with equal doses of Small Faces, Rolling Stones, and Buffalo Springfield.

Customer Reviews

Every track is good.
slow picker
Get yourself a whisky, some cordless headphones, turn up the volume and enjoy!
W. Spencer
A great songwriter with a strange sense of humor.
john

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

21 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Roger D. Osburn on May 2, 2012
Format: Audio CD
I'm not going to do a song-by-song review of Ray's newest CD. It is grit 'n groove from start to finish, heavy on the blues influences, once again visiting the "darkness vs. light" subject matter for many of the songs. The whole album has a loose, raw, live-in-the-studio feel to it. If you're familiar w/ Ray's recent recordings "Grifter's Hymnal" is a continuation of the same style and theme as the previous two or three recordings. Except that this one seems to lean heavier on the rockin' blues side and not the folk/country/singer-songwriter songs of years gone by.

I saw Ray at a gig in Tulsa last week and visited w/ him after the show over a late dinner. I told him that my impression of several of the songs, "New Year's Eve at the Gates of Hell" in particular, sounded like they kicked it into overdrive from the very beginning and the whole thing was about to derail by the time the song ended but stopped just short of that. He did say that New Year's Eve was pretty much done live in one take w/ only a line "punched in" afterwards.

I have all of Ray's work, from the first ill-fated Cowboy Twinkies LP to this new one and I honestly don't think Ray has ever sounded better or has released a stronger, more consistently realized album than "Grifter's Hymnal". I don't see how any fan of Ray's could be disappointed.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By loce_the_wizard VINE VOICE on July 31, 2012
Format: Audio CD
The strands of barbed wit and grit twisted with humility and gratitute throughout "Grifter's Hymnal" should snare RWH some new fans and keep most of his long-time listeners smiling. It shines with the funky, wry humor and insight marks Ray Wylie Hubbard's music and, for me, redeems what I thought was a subpar effort on his previous recording with the unwieldy title of "A: Enlightenment B: Endarkenment (Hint: There Is No C)."

Mr. Hubbard tosses off one clever line after another, melding cultural commentary and wordplay as deftly as a hip hop artist, but laying down some mean riffs throughout. The music is more open and clear, and a nod should go to the production and mastering team who gave us this great sounding session.

The percussion, as always when Rick Richards is on the skins, proves the perfect foil for the fret work, both the electric guitars (including some guest lead playing from Hubbard's son Lucas on several tracks), the solid bass from George Reiff, and, of course, RWH's fleet fingers on the acoustic guitars.

In short, Mr. Hubbard takes his game up a notch when he could just be phoning it like plently of folks are content to do. Thanks for this one!
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful By bob b on March 29, 2012
Format: Audio CD
Ray Wylie is just like good wine, with age he only improves. After a few bouts with singer/songwriter syndrome, his last few albums have hit the growling troubador stage. This one stays mostly with same musicians (a good thing) and even adds Richard Starkey on one track. Worthy example of what is called third coast music.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By applewood on August 6, 2012
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
After seeing RWH live a few years ago (at one of Willie Nelson's 4th of July picnics), and then really enjoying his latest at the time (Snake Farm), I was delighted to find this most recent offering continues with the same approach, and is even better! Hubbard writes all but one of these songs (Ringo Starr's Coochy Coochy, which Ringo appears on), and he is such a good song-writer - real and unpretentious, quirky and raw. But even better are the accompaniments - really well produced (but not over produced), powerful and full of tasty licks (plenty of help from some great guitarists including his son, Lucas). And it is the music that makes this such a great recording.

So, what does Hubbard sound like these days? Kind of a cross between Neil Young, Patti Smith and some righteous old Delta Blues preacher man I just can't put my finger on....

My only (small) complaint is the lyrics aren't included, but they are available on his website, and mostly clearly audible on the recording anyways...

"...So we hit it off me and this dancer
We hit it off like a metaphor
Like a metaphor for a hydrogen bomb
We was enriched uranium, super critical mass, we was a chain reaction
It was love and lust, aw mostly lust but a mutual attraction
So there I was boys at 21 years old, I had it all
I had a fine stripper girlfriend and a Gold Top Les Paul

Aw, the future, it looked promising
Oh but there were dark clouds on the horizon..." (RWH from Mother's Blues)
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Mummy on January 9, 2013
Format: Audio CD
I can't add anything else that hasn't already been said about RWH. He's the greatest! But there is one thing I want to point out about him. He's so humble. And I admire him for that too! I saw him in Dec 2012 in Port Aransas, Tx. at The Third Coast theater. No better venue. Up close(very) and personal. Anyway, after the show, I bought a Grifter's Hymnal cd. And he autographed it and pointed out to me one of the songs. And circled it. He said, "Be sure to check out the credits on this song." OK I said! Thinking to myself, as if he needed any big name artist to help him sell his product. RWH, you're one-of-a-kind!!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By H. P. on May 15, 2012
Format: MP3 Music
Sadly, and shamefully, I have until now largely known Ray Wylie Hubbard by reputation, whether by in-song tribute (E.g., Blackberry Smoke's Good One Comin' On), cover of his work (E.g., Cory Morrow's version of Redneck Mother), or his own covers (E.g., of James McMurtry's Choctaw Bingo).

Hubbard sells himself a bit short when he sings, "The truth of the matter is I really can't sing, but I can quote Martin Luther King." His great strength is in his songwriting, but his voice more than does the job. The gravel in it might not win him friends in Nashville, but its welcomed by this listener more than a little tired of the over-smoothed, saccharine sweet voices Nashville continues to demand. The heavy bluesy tint to The Grifter's Hymnal suits Hubbard right down to the ground.

Hubbard starts off with a bang with dance-friendly Coricidin Bottle. He slows things down in the next several tracks, providing plenty of good blues and bad theology. Moss and Flowers has that easy rhythm I love so much in music and so seldom present. Red Badge of Courage is a fine war song, not nearly so in-your-face as, say, Reckless Kelly's American Blood. The pace picks up a bit in the second half of the album (Mother Blues is probably the highlight of the album).
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