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Guitars Cadillacs Etc, Etc. Deluxe Edition

4.8 out of 5 stars 15 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Deluxe Edition, October 17, 2006
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Dwight Yoakam's debut (actually an expanded version of his independent EP) brought the high-kicking spirit of Buck Owens's Bakersfield country back to the radio and rescued it from urban cowboy blandness. Yoakam's lonesome yodel is immediately memorable, and his band kicks like a liquored-up mule, thanks to Brantley Kearns's whining fiddle and Pete Anderson's astounding Telecaster chops. Along with Steve Earle's Guitar Town, Yoakam's Guitars, Cadillacs, Etc. is a cornerstone of what became the '90s alternative country movement. Yoakam remains a vital recording artist, and this is the first and best place to get familiar with him. Produced by Pete Anderson, Yoakam's 1986 Reprise debut is a sinewy mix of traditional honky-tonk, red-hot Bakersfield twang, and rock 'n' roll attitude; and it spawned a trio of hits, including "It Won't Hurt," the title track, and a cover of Johnny Horton's "Honky Tonk Man." A second disc captures Dwight and the Babylonian Cowboys delivering an incendiary and previously unreleased 1986 performance recorded at the Roxy Theater on L.A.'s Sunset Strip.

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Though most of these recordings have previously been anthologized, this two-disc set puts Dwight Yoakam's emergence and progression from the roots-punk circuit to the country mainstream in context. It begins with the 1981 demos that earned him a recording contract, showing that his artistry as a retro-hillbilly honky-tonker was already in full bloom, with both his singing and his songwriting conjuring an era that otherwise seemed long gone. Yet it was his pairing with guitarist/producer Pete Anderson for his debut album, Guitars, Cadillacs, Etc., Etc.--here remastered and reissued in its entirety--that gave Yoakam's music that hard-twanging edge that found him sharing fans on the L.A. circuit with the Blasters, Los Lobos, and X. For Yoakam completists, the real treat here is disc two, a 1986 performance in the wake of that album at Hollywood's Roxy (not exactly your typical honky-tonk). With nine of the twelve tracks previously unreleased, Yoakam acknowledges a debt to Buck Owens, Merle Haggard, and the Bakersfield sound on "Guitars, Cadillacs"; pays tribute to the influence of John Fogerty and Emmylou Harris, apparently both in the audience, before "Mystery Train"; and then barely stops for breath before blazing into Johnny Cash's "Ring of Fire." The urgency of the live-wire performance makes it easy to see why the rock crowd embraced him first, but he ultimately compromised little as he conquered the country airwaves as well. --Don McLeese
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 17, 2006)
  • Deluxe Edition edition
  • Original Release Date: October 17, 2006
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Format: Deluxe Edition
  • Label: Rhino
  • ASIN: B000GIWS56
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #142,815 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
Dwight Yoakam has probably done more to revitalize good ol' honky-tonk Country music than anyone, and this album serves as proof. My radio show, "How Music Changed," is dedicated to explaining how various facets of our musical culture change, continue to develop, or simply waste away. By the mid-eighties, Texas Swing, Hillbilly Country, and Honky Tonk music had fallen on hard times. It is possible that it could have faded away entirely. The only thing that keeps music styles alive is when an artist understands the genre and is talented enough to contemporize the style for a new audience. That is exactly what Yoakam does on "Guitars, Cadillacs, Etc., Etc."

The `Deluxe Edition' of this disk contains the entire original album as it appeared in 1986, plus the original demos which were recorded back in 1981. Five years is a long time to wait for your vision to take hold, but Yoakam must have been dead set on realizing his without compromise. The demo recordings are fully realized songs that only benefited from the spit and polish of the album versions. Best of all is the absolutely incredible live show that takes up the second disk, recorded at Los Angeles' Roxy soon after the album was released. If it weren't for the stage patter and the rock and roll infusion of electric energy, this could have been a long lost document from a Texas roadhouse circa 1956. Yoakam's voice is a natural wonder. His band is stunning, too, sounding for all the world like they are ready and able to break out and reinvent Country music in the image of its heroes, rather than the pabulum that has been passed off as `new' country. Even if you already own the original disk, this edition is a must if only for the live disk; this is some of the best live country music I have ever heard in my life.
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Format: Audio CD
If Dwight Yoakam had never released another album after 1986's GUITARS, CADILLACS, ETC., Etc., he would still be considered a savior of traditional country music. When this album first came out twenty years ago in 1986, it was the swift kick in the ass that country music had needed. While the first single was a remake of Johnny Horton's 1956 hit, "Honky Tonk Man," Yoakam proved he was no slouch as a songwriter. Songs like "It Won't Hurt," "Miner's Prayer" and "South of Cincinnati" proved Yoakam was an artist to be reckoned with.

This deluxe edition includes the original 10-track Warner Bros. album recorded in 1986. In addition, disc 1 includes the original 6-song EP issued on the Oak label in 1984 along with four other tracks recorded at the same time. These tracks featured a different lineup of musicians, including Jay Dee Maness on pedal steel. [All 10 tracks first appeared on the 2002 box set REPRISE, PLEASE BABY.]

The real bonus is disc 2, a 1986 live set performed at the Roxy the same month the album was released nationally. Yoakam is backed by the Babylonian Cowboys, featuring producer/guitarist Pete Anderson. This is a killer live set. After performing a rousing version of Bill Monroe's "Can't You Hear Me Calling," Yoakam jokes with the crowd saying, "Well...it's just ol' hillbilly stuff." Don't believe it. This is powerful stuff. Nine of these tracks are previously unreleased. [Only "Can't You Hear Me Calling," "Heartaches by the Number" and "My Bucket's Got a Hole in It" were previously issued (on REPRISE, PLEASE BABY).] Yoakam and his crack band rip through originals like "Guitars, Cadillacs" and "I'll Be Gone," and in between do respectful covers of Bill Monroe's "Rocky Road Blues," Junior Parker's "Mystery Train" and June Carter and Merle Kilgore's "Ring of Fire.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
After reading Don McLeese's biography of Dwight Yoakam, A THOUSAND MILES FROM NOWHERE, I knew I had to track down this "deluxe edition" of the iconic first album (OK, CD...showing my age, I guess) of Dwight Yoakam. It's 2 disk offering which includes 1981 demos and the Live show at The Roxy in 1986. You can really hear the excitement of the promise of what has become a pioneering career in these early tracks. Thanks Don McLeese for the Heads up!
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
If you're a Dwight fan, you owe it to yourself to get this remastered package. For me, though I'm mostly a rock guy, after Merle Haggard and Buck Owens, Dwight's the man.

The copy I had of this album was a first generation CD and it sounded, to be charitable, like crap. The remaster, on the other hand, is great sounding. It made me realize how much I used to listen to this and how much I liked it. The demos of the songs for this album and those that came after it are fun to hear as well and there's a ton of them.

I'm still not sure why they put the demos ahead of the actual album on the first disc but that's a very small quibble. The second disc has more demos but also some great live tracks. Long live Pete Anderson!
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This is the version of this CD to get. The ten demo tracks, the second CD with the live concert at the Roxy, the digital remastering... And let's face it, the music is just fantastic. Several of the songs appear in two or three versions, and it's interesting to watch the evolution from the demos to the 1986 studio album, as well as the songs that appeared on later Dwight Yoakam albums, like "This Drinking Will Kill Me" and "I Sang Dixie." This CD holds up well to repeated listenings and is a must-have for any fan of Dwight Yoakam.
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