This compilation is the soundtrack, if you will, to Ronstadt's recently published memoir "Feels Like Home" and it features 10 songs that were influential to Linda's life and music, going all the way back to her childhood. Ronstadt sings four of the songs herself, including a haunting take on "El Sueno," a cut originally found on her Mas Canciones album and sung in Spanish. Also in Spanish is her rendition of the Cuban mambo "Piel Canel," an intoxicating three minute cut that calls for a quick turn around the dance floor. Two duets are sung in English, the delicate "I Never Will Marry" with Dolly Parton and "Across the Border" with Emmylou Harris that features Neil Young playing harmonica. Mexican folk artists Los Cenzontles figure prominently here, performing the loneliness-soaked "Palomas Que Andan Volando" by themselves and teaming with Jackson Browne for "The Dreamer" and pairing with David Hidalgo for "Naninan Upirin." Also contributing are P.D. Ronstadt & the Co and Ry Cooder with Lalo Guerrero. Los Cenzontles appear again to finish the album with "Voy Caminando." Whether you follow along with Linda's memoir or not, Feels Like Home is a wonderful listen. CD package includes a booklet with new notes on each song penned by Linda. Order it here (ad).
The Burritos had many lineups over the course of their relatively short lifespan; for this live show in New York City the band consisted of former members of the Byrds Skip Battin and Gene Parsons with Gib Guilbeau, Joel Scott Hill and pedal steel master "Sneaky" Pete Kleinow. Guilbeau's fiddle playing drives the instrumental opening cut "Hot Burrito Stomp" which leads into the fan favorite "Hot Burrito #2." Introducing it as "L.A. disco reggae," the guys play "Quiet Man" before rocking the country classic "Dim Lights, Thick Smoke" and the Cajun burner "Diggy Diggy Lo." Other standards the guys run through are "Faded Love," "Close Up the Honky Tonks," "Truck Drivin' Man," "Six Days on the Road" and the set closer "Orange Blossom Special" which puts an exclamation point on this rip-roarin' set of country rock. Order it here (ad).
This seven song EP begins with the country rock sounds of "Bluewater Sky," a cut that has the same laid back vibe that early Eagles songs had along with a catchy chorus and a guitar solo that sounds very Jerry Garcia-ish (the band are acknowledged fans of the Grateful Dead.) The country sounds continue with "Don't Act Surprised," complete with a honeyed pedal steel guitar part. Danceland are not exclusively an Americana act though; "Danceland Road" is a funky instrumental groove while "Protection Mantra" is soaked in psychedelia and harmonies worthy of Crosby, Stills & Nash. "Down on Me" is a bit Gram Parsons-ish and closing track "4:20" is a hit of pure musical joy. Get it here (ad).
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