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Ernie Hagar  

"Man Of Steel"

There are actually two different West Coast steel guitar styles. The first is stone country, as popularized by Ralph Mooney, Jay MacDonald, and Jay Dee Maness on records out of Bakersfield. The other is more experimental, with elements of swing and rock-a-billy as well as country. It has its roots in the classic 1950's recordings of Speedy West and Jimmy Bryant, and its early proponents included Red Rhodes, Vance Terry, and Ernie Hagar.

This excellent 20-song retrospective of Ernie Hagar's work includes 10 cuts from the 1970's LP Steel Guitar Odyssey and 10 more that were released as singles or album cuts in the 1960's by Sage & Sand Records. In the Sage & Sand tracks, we hear the West/Bryant influence, but by the 70's Ernie Hager was exploring a brave new world. The Odyssey tracks include electronic effects and overdubbing, and the songs encompass a wide variety of musical styles. My favorite track is Morning, the familiar classical theme from Grieg's Peer Gynt Suite, which shows just how adventurous Ernie had become.

This is a classic collection that no steeler should be without.

  1. Lickity Split
  2. Perdido
  3. My Elusive Dream
  4. How High the Moon
  5. Blue Jade
  6. Cherokee Maiden
  7. Morning
  8. Hi Jinks
  9. Desperado
  10. It Could Happen to You
  11. Swingin' Steel
  12. Blue Steel
  13. Tumbleweed
  14. At Sunrise
  15. Steel Boogie Twist
  16. Outside Inn
  17. Spacewalk
  18. Surf N' Sand
  19. String Duster Blues
  20. Spindrift

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