Oklahoma Hills

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Oklahoma Hills

Postby Stickball1 » Mon Nov 01, 2010 11:46 am

Hi youall, back in the 60,s Hank thompson had a big hit with Oklahoma Hills one of my favorite tunes,well I came across a great version by Jim reeves on youtube,now aside from Jim,s great singing the break is fingerpicked it sounds like Merle in part and Chet in part,I dont know how to post youtube here, but if one of you puter guys could post it I think it would be fun to hear your Ideas who,s doin the pikin maybe Paul would know.

I think this would be a great arrangment for Richard Hudson to sing and play the break.


Thanks Sticball1
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Re: Oklahoma Hills

Postby Walt » Mon Nov 01, 2010 11:54 am

Richard would do excellent work at singing it and picking it. Glenn Burgin has one of the best I've heard on picking the song. He plays it on the picking site every once and awhile.
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Re: Oklahoma Hills

Postby Randy Finney » Mon Nov 01, 2010 1:01 pm

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Re: Oklahoma Hills

Postby baggetta » Mon Nov 01, 2010 1:16 pm

The album list several guitarists including Chet Atkins. It was also produced by Chet and Shoals.
http://www.lpdiscography.com/r/Reeves/reeves_singingdown.htm
It sounds a lot like Chet to me on that track.
Al B.
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Re: Oklahoma Hills

Postby Randy Finney » Mon Nov 01, 2010 1:55 pm

Thanks Al,

I didn't know if the original album for this particular version was "Singin' Down The Lane", "Have I Told You Lately", or a Radio Transcription, or whatever, etc.

I do know that this is the version on the compilation "The Country Music Gentleman" (Membran Music Ltd).
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Re: Oklahoma Hills

Postby Vidar Lund » Mon Nov 01, 2010 2:10 pm

It´s also included in the 2004 double-CD compilation "He´ll have to go" and "Tall Tales and short Tempers". The" He´ll have to go" part is not the original LP but a later compilation.
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Re: Oklahoma Hills

Postby Richard Hudson » Mon Nov 01, 2010 3:14 pm

That sure sounds like Chet to me. He is the only true fingerpicker listed as a guitarist on the album liner notes. They tell me that before Gentleman Jim made it big in Nashville that he made the honky tonk circuit in Texas and Oklahoma until someone told him he needed to go to Nashville. I have also heard that it was Chet that suggested that he start singing his songs in a lower register because that's where the quality was in his voice. Jim was a big guy and from what I have heard was pretty much his own bouncer when the situation arose.

Thanks for the vote of confidence, stickball. I have been in Oklahoma all of my life but Hank and Jim Reeves did the song quite well. And, I agree with Walt Bredy that Glenn Burgin does a fine job of picking it. I may give it a shot one of these days.

Thanks,
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Re: Oklahoma Hills

Postby Vidar Lund » Mon Nov 01, 2010 4:28 pm

Richard, Jim had a contract with Abbott records and had two giant hits, Mexican Joe and Bimbo in the early 1950´s, but wasn´t satisfied with the hillbilly and novelty songs the label wanted him to record. He got an offer from Steve Sholes at RCA, and accepted it because, as he said, Steve didn´t put any pressure on him and was very sympathetic. He had a few hits with Mr. Sholes as a producer, most noteably Yonder comes a Sucker, but it wasn´t until Chet took over the reins that he started having major hits, starting with Four Walls in 1957. And as you say, between them they decided that Jim should use his beautiful baritone for what it was worth and leave his Abbott "hillbilly" style. When recording Four Walls Jim insisted that Chet played the guitar parts himself, so Chet had to run back and forth between the recording studio and the control console during the recording! The rest is history, as they say. As late as 2003 Jim Reeves´ CD compilation His Personal Best was on the hit lists here in Norway and gained another Golden Disc in addition to his innumerable Platinum, Diamond, Gold and Silver discs his recordings had amassed through the years, starting in 1960 with He´ll have to go. His last (for the time being?) Platinum disc came in 1995 for the CD Norwegian Hits. Not bad for a person who passed away in 1964. Artists like Chet and Jim are really "evergreens" themselves.
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Re: Oklahoma Hills

Postby Stickball1 » Mon Nov 01, 2010 6:26 pm

Thank you for the posting Randy,here is my take on the guitar break and the recording in general.I beleave the guitarist is Jack shook he was a fine fingerpicker in the Tavis Atkins style,in fact in the late 50,s or early 60,s RCA put out an album on there camden lable Jack Shook plays Chet Atkins,although he played a lot of Chets tunes he wasn,t as smooth as Chet and thats what Im hearing on this recording.As far as Hanks version compared to Jim,s I prefer Jim,s this is the kind of country I like,Hanks was a little to uptown for me with the big band and all the reverb on his voice on the bridge,sounded like he was singin in a barrel but what do I know he sold a million ,dont get me wrong I loved Hanks music.


Oh yeah Ive herd this tune played instrumentally many times Im sure Glenn does a great job on it,Eddie P did it on one of his CD,s very nice version,I remember him telling that Paul showed him how to play it.but what I would like someone Like Richard,
to do this arrangment with the singing and pickin why he could use it for a theme song on his website thanks Sticball1
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Re: Oklahoma Hills

Postby Vidar Lund » Wed Nov 03, 2010 12:06 pm

Well, who knows. Here´s an early live version of Jim Reeves singing Waiting for a Train. His faithful lead guitarist Leo Jackson plays a Merle/Chet style solo with a straight pick.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j0bhuBhVr20
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