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on October 26, 2012
The intent is fully realized: a loving tribute to one of the greatest country songwriters, headed by a superb country artist and supported by one of the most impressive all-star casts ever assembled. The result is not only a tribute to classic country music itself, but perhaps the best introduction possible to one of the treasures of classic country music.
Jamey Johnson lives the songs of Hank Cochran so honestly, one would think he wrote them himself. He displays the great difference between singing a song and channeling the emotion, and every guest artist on the album matches Johnson's depth and nuance.
Not everyone can listen to decades old recordings of original artists and consider them anything but a piece of history. The greatness of this album is that Jamey Johnson and cohorts bring these fantastic songs to a new audience, and in doing so make them sound not merely new, but timeless.
For my money, this is one of the best albums of the year of any genre. My highest recommendation.
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on October 19, 2012
This is the country music I grew up with, listening to my sisters and Daddy singing together. Country/Western music today is barely a shadow of the beauty and heartache of these songs, thank you Jamey!
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on October 17, 2012
I received this cd yesterday after waiting what seemed like forever. This is so unbelievably wonderful. True country. Takes you back to real country music not this pop so called country music. I can count on one hand the country artists that are true country artists today and Jamey is for sure country. Wouldnt expect anything less from Jamey. Definitely think i will be listening to this one over and over again! This is so worth the purchase!.
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on October 18, 2012
Like many, I first became aware of Hank Cochran through his wonderful songs performed by the great Patsy Cline. Having grown up in the rock generation of the late sixties and seventies, I remember several conversations with friends about the great songwriters. Dylan, Lennon, Young would all immediately be brought up but i would always say "Don't forget about Hank Cochran", which would usually draw quizzical looks. After rattling off several of the classic Hank-Patsy songs, friends would say "One guy wrote ALL those?". I was especially happy to see the Hank revival in the early 90's with several of the emerging alt-country bands covering Hank songs. From Ray Price and Buck Owens to Hazeldine and American Paint, Hank has always been there (a true favorite of mine is the Hazeldine cover of It's Only Love - surprised that song didn't show up here). As for this tribute, wow! The magnitude of this all star cast exemplifies the admiration, appreciation and love the true bloods of Americana music have for an amazing person and songwriter, the likes of which we will probably never see again. Thanks to Jamey Johnson, the wonderful musicians on this CD, the production staff (all top notch) but most of all thanks to Hank Cochran for leaving us a lifetime of songs that will live on forever.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon October 28, 2012
Hank Cochran is one of the finest songwriters the country genre has ever known, there is no doubt about that. This album from Jamey Johnson is a tribute in the purest sense of the word and should be listened to by anyone who appreciates true country music. As a matter of fact, if anyone wants to know exactly WHAT pure country music is they should listen to this album. This is the kind of country I heard growing up when my dad would play albums from Waylon, Willie, Kris, Merle and so on. The fact that we get to hear Willie, Kris and Merle here is just a bonus as Jamey Johnson has as pure a country voice as there is.

When I turn on country radio these days I have to wonder just how we got so far away from music like this so fast. I'm not saying there isn't some good music still being made, but it's now a rarity to find someone making an album like this that is cut from the old school country music cloth. I found myself smiling as every new track came out of my speakers as I remembered just how good a steel guitar and a raspy voice could sound.

The bottom line on this one is buy it, it's a perfect tribute to one of the greatest songwriters around and it's a perfect primer for anyone who thinks country music is what they're playing on the radio today. Thank you Jamey Johnson for keeping the flame alive!
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on October 28, 2012
Remember when Outlaws and Waylon and Willie revived real country music when it had gone down the crapper?
What if fans of Jamey Johnson who still hadn't figured out how he was different from Taylor Swift and Jason Aldean and
Tim Mcgraw and, yes, even Blake and his wife, listened to this and GOT IT?
Suddenly pop artists who are capable of doing the real thing like Lee Ann and Martina and Trace started doing real country again.
Then curious listeners suddenly discovered Dale Watson and James Hand and Roger Wallace and Billy Joe Shaver and Wayne Hancock and
Amber Digby and Georgette Jones and Leona and Ron Williams.
Suddenly real country is back!
God bless Jamey Johnson. I wonder how long Nashville will put up with him. He's the real deal in a phony baloney town.
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on December 14, 2012
With an all-star cast of legends on board, Jamey brings to life some of the best songs from Cochran's catalog, including some of his lesser known material. Willie and Merle are both extremely strong vocally and, of course, King George knocks one out of the park with "The Eagle" (certainly not a conventional choice given Strait has taken a number of Cochran's songs to the top ten over his career).

If you're interested in discovering or rediscovering some of the most important songs in the genre's history, this album is the ticket. I can only hope that Jamey will continue to write, cover and collaborate on this level for many years to come.
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VINE VOICEon November 24, 2012
There are few songwriters in country music history who can wring so much emotion out of a song as Hank Cochran did. His lyrics were simple and to the point, yet told such emotionally complex stories. Songs like "Would These Arms Be In Your Way" and "Make the World Go Away" have entered the pantheon of classic country songs; you've heard these before even if you aren't aware of it, because they are, simply, timeless.

Jamey Johnson has proven himself to be a superb singer/songwriter, which makes his choice of a covers album an interesting one. Obviously, there will be no major hits from this record--sadly, that goes without saying. But there don't have to be any hits, because all of these songs WERE hits at one point. And the truth is, Johnson simply hits this record out of the ballpark. He's joined by an impressive supporting cast: Kris Kristofferson, George Strait, Ronnie Dunn, Willie Nelson, Ray Price, Elvis Costello, Merle Haggard, Lee Ann Womack, and many more (each song is basically a duet). Each artist featured here is clearly in love with the material, relishing in the chance to record music of this caliber. Johnson spends more time on the ballads and heartbreak songs, which makes this album best enjoyed at night, with a cold beer; it also bogs down the listener a bit much, making those moments where he cuts loose ("I Don't Do Windows," "This Ain't My First Rodeo") all the more refreshing. Still, overall, LIVING FOR A SONG is a fantastic, traditional country record. If you like your country with fiddle, steel, and soul, you shouldn't pass this album up.
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on March 19, 2014
If you're one of those people who claims to love music but, when asked, couldn't give a coherent explanation of what the song was about, don't waste your time or mine reading this review. It's like trying to teach a pig to sing; it accomplishes absolutely nothing but annoys the hell out of the pig. However, if you believe there are only two types of music, good and bad, and can distinguish between the two, you need to listen to this album. Jamey had an album out a few years back called "The Dollar", which had a successful radio friendly hit by the same name.It was actually the worst song on the album but it was commercial. Jamey started doing drugs, went a little crazy, and ended up in prison. He came out of prison broke, but kept writing songs. Two of those songs became huge hits for other artists-George Strait ("Give it Away") and Trace Adkins ("Honky-Tonk Bedonkadonk"). "Give it Away" won him the Songwriter of the Year" award and gave him enough money to produce and record his next album, "That Long Lonesome Song", which won him another Songwrier of the Year" award for "In Color". Unfortunately for all of us, there isn't a Country Music radio programmer with enough sense to play his records. It seems he's "too country!" Idiots! This album is his homage to a great songwriter named Hank Cochran. I'll be the first to admit that I had no interest in country music when Hank came along but I defy you to listen to this album and not be blown away! Go to YouTube and listen to Jamey Johnson's voice and pay attention to his lyrics. There are a ton of people turning out music today and five years from now nobody will remember more than 10% of them, if that many. Once you hear Jamey, you will NEVER forget him! He is a TRUE ARTIST! Trust me, you will thank me for turning you on to him.
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on February 7, 2013
I absolutely love the CD! I buy a lot of CDs (1 or 2 a week) and this one is just great! There was no trying "to get used to" the songs so I could decide if I liked them or not...... Each arrangement is fantastic! The various stars singing with Jamey Johnson are enjoyable, but the main thing is the superb arrangements. If you enjoy any of the "older" country (the kind Blake Shelton doesn't appreciate), then this one is definitely for you. I wish Jamey Johnson a long and successful career, especially if he has the foresight to put together such good music in the future.
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