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My Father's Face

Leo KottkeAudio CD
4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)

Price: $11.75
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MP3 Music, 11 Songs, 1989 $9.99  
Audio CD, 1990 $11.75  
Vinyl, 1990 --  
Audio Cassette, 1989 --  

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My Father's Face + 6 & 12 String Guitar + Greenhouse
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 25, 1990)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: RCA Victor
  • ASIN: B0000000J9
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #39,484 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Times Twelve
2. Everybody Lies
3. B.J.
4. Why Can't You Fix My Car
5. Theme From 'The Rick And Bob Report'
6. My Aunt Francis
7. William Powell
8. Back In Buffalo
9. Mona Ray
10. Jack Gets Up
11. Doorbell

Editorial Reviews

Guitar virtuoso Leo Kottke has never been a fan of his own singing, observing once that it resembles "geese farts on a foggy day." Be that as it may, his voice (both vocally and lyrically) is an essential element of his persona, one he's too-often neglected. This cogent 1989 collection balances the Minnesotan's trademark knuckle-busting 12-string exhibitions ("William Powell," "Theme from 'The Rick and Bob Show'") with memorable lyric-based songs. The latter are what make My Father's Face such an appealing album. Kottke bares his grim northern soul on "Everybody Lies" ("I don't remember what it was like to go back home/I only know it was cold and white and I was alone"), while "Why Can't You Fix My Car?" and "Jack Gets Up" are sardonic statements on the quietly desperate lifestyle. Producer T Bone Burnett's select sidemen (David Hidalgo, Michael Blair, Edgar Meyer), meanwhile, are unfailingly restrained and tasteful. In the end, you're left with a fuller sense of Kottke. He's smart, funny, a bit gloomy ... and, yeah, he plays a mean guitar, too. --Steven Stolder

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great starting point December 29, 2000
Format:Audio CD
I was first introduced, like most, to Mr. Kottke's music by being invited by a friend (his daughter) to his concert. I remember thinking beforehand, 'oh gee great, an acoustic guitar player, right down my alley'. I was not expecting this to be my cup of tea.
But his songs, lyrics, and random train of thought discussion between songs immediately win you over. Completely disarming, the music reminds me of two guitar players strumming something waltzy in nature. That's sounds bad doesn't it? It's actually quite awe inspiring.
He captures a wide range of emotions from goofy humor to melancholy sadness. All the time you'll find your toe tapping and your head bobbing and your brain anticipating the next odd lyric. This will always be my favorite LK album for its accessibility. And my friends, who range from hardcore metal heads to punkers to n'sync listeners all find this album incredible.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Creative guitar-work at its best October 5, 2004
By Zordano
Format:Audio CD
Here's Kottke's finest work - and definitely one to start with if you're new to him.

His rich compositions here encompass solo guitar (tracks 3, 5, 6, 7, 9) and songs (2, 4, 8, 10) which he sings with his own guitar accompaniment and backing musicians. Tracks 1 and 11 feature just his guitar and the musicians.

Every track is simply first class.

His playing is cleaner than before (following a period of revising his technique) but retains his distinctive energy and attack (`Times Twelve') and the CD illustrates his quirky innovation - `Twelve' features guitar and timpani drum!

The `Theme From The Rick and Bob Report' is melodic and beautifully optimistic; `William Powell' an absorbing, deft tune; `My Aunt Francis' and `B.J.' are complex pieces - `B.J.' being rounded off with a subtle, perfectly executed ending. `Mona Ray' is a superior rendition of an earlier recording - light, nimble, understated.

`Why Can't You Fix My Car?' and `Jack Gets Up' reflect his lightly cynical, teasing wit. `Back in Buffalo' has a superb melody hidden under his twisting, shuffling, discordant guitar work.

Kottke's famous self-effacement about his vocals is nonsense - his singing on `Every Body Lies' is exceptional - the song also demonstrates how sadly underrated he is as a songwriter/lyricist.

What do you get when you mix American folk and blues, throw in little tinges of jazz, country and pop, add truly original, exceptional steel strung acoustic guitar playing, dazzling technique, great singing, novel compositions, sharp lyrics, plus unconventional, happy wit? -

- why Leo Kottke of course.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fabulous song October 6, 2002
By scoop25
Format:Audio CD
I've been a Leo Kottke fan for thirty years but this album may be the best ever, simply on the strength of "Mona Ray," the most exquisite song I've heard him do...this is "Echoing Gilewitz" with the mystery but not the sadness. What a treat...
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Acoustic guitar pinnacle July 3, 2003
Format:Audio CD
I'll start out by saying I am a devoted Kottke fan, but if given the unfortunate task of selecting only one album from this seminal master, I would prolly select this one. My enduring favorite is 'Aunt Francis'... this tune will grow on you given a few listens....If not, listen again!
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars WHOSE FACE January 28, 2001
Format:Audio CD
This album was my intro to Leo Kottke. A local radio station had for many years used the "Theme from the Rick and Bob Report" as its intro. The infectious and upbeat melody always appealed to me. One day, I was privileged to learn the title and artist; within 30 minutes, I had my first Kottke CD. I have never looked back.
This CD is in my opinion an excellent introduction to Kottke. The fretwork is amazing but not overwhelming despite the virtuosity. The voice is unusual as always but so appealing when you get used to it.
The "piece de resistance" is "Jack Gets Up". My kids ( all 5) still laugh when they hear it. To them, it's the "snort fort song". I just smile.
If you love acoustic guitar, buy this album. In fact, any kind of music. I defy anyone to listen and not fall in love with the fingers from Minnesota. I sure did.
Many CD's later, it's still my father's face, just like Leo. And the thin grin too.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best Kottke album! July 19, 1998
By C. Fink
Format:Audio CD
I've got virtually all Kottke's albums that I can find, and after years of listening, this one is still my get that great guitar work, nothing else like it in the universe, plus that wonderful voice! Leo himself says it sounds like "goose farts on a muggy day," but hey, sometimes we need to hear that kind of thing! You can't go wrong with this album, great variety of music, great guitar, great lyrics!
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Guitar Licks and Wry Humor June 29, 2000
Format:Audio CD
Leo Kottke's guitar style is absolutely incredible. My first exposure to his music was going with a friend to a concert to see him live, and I spent a long time after that trying to find the CD that had the "Every Day in the Morning..." song (Jack Gets Up). My first impression still holds: that Kottke uses his guitar to tell a story. He hardly needs to sing to convey his thought, and when he does, his voice is much better than he thinks it is...
This album is a great example of his work, and one of my favorites. "Why can't you fix my car" made me laugh, and it has a very interesting intro as well. A great pick if you're new to Kottke.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Evening with Leo
Brought cd with try and stop me after watching Leo in concert,we enjoyed the concert and enjoy listening to CDs at home.
Published 17 months ago by Cynthia Owens
5.0 out of 5 stars Leo forever!
This is Leo Kottke at his finest! I enjoy this recording more than any of his collective greatest hits. Not familiar with Leo? Start with this one!!!!
Published 21 months ago by D. brodil
5.0 out of 5 stars Leo's Purple Period, 1987-1999 - Part 3
This multi-part review can be found on each of these product pages:

1) A Shout Toward Noon (1987)
2) Regards From Chuck Pink (1988)
3) My Father's Face... Read more
Published on November 21, 2010 by Ricardo Aparicio
5.0 out of 5 stars One song, I listen to over and over.
My rating says it all. I nearly wore this CD out when I first got it. I enjoy "why can't you fix my car" but, for some odd reason I especially like "Jack gets up". Read more
Published on October 18, 2010 by RALPH J THIBODEAU
5.0 out of 5 stars Dispatches from the Snort Fort
Others have discussed Kottke's brilliance as a guitarist but for those who adore guitar without vocals his classic has to be 1971's Six and Twelve String Guitar. Read more
Published on June 17, 2010 by state
5.0 out of 5 stars Very strong album, I appreciate it more as time passes
I just recently started to listen to this recording after many years of not.
I don't know about american primitive or ostinati, but I do know when music puts a grin on my... Read more
Published on April 27, 2010 by J. T. Marrs
5.0 out of 5 stars This is the best of Leo Kottke
My first Kottke Album; And my favorite. Leo Kottke is the heavy metal of folk music! Few other guitarists have the artistic vision of Leo Kottke. Read more
Published on October 9, 2000 by "stevel3"
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