Thursday, December 22, 2016

Doug Sahm & The Sir Douglas Quintet 2005 The Complete Mercury Recordings

Genre: Blues
Rate: 320 kbps CBR / 44100
Time: 05:45:54
Size: 792,28 MB

United States

Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine

Doug Sahm is one of the great figures in 20th century American music, which isn't quite the same thing as saying he's one of the best-known musicians. As the frontman of the Sir Douglas Quintet, he had a Top 20 hit with the garage rock classic "She's About a Mover" in 1966 and a Top 30 single with "Mendocino" three years later, but after that he settled into a small but intensely devoted cult following. Not that there weren't attempts to break him on a wider scale -- after the Quintet broke up, Atlantic launched a publicity blitz for a pair of solo albums in 1973 -- but they never quite clicked, probably because Sahm's music, no matter how brilliant it was, never was popular music. It was a wild, wooly blend of rock & roll, soul, country, blues, and Tex-Mex, as informed by the sunny vibes of hippiedom as it was by the rowdy spirit of garage rock. Sahm created this sound with the Sir Douglas Quintet in the late '60s and over the next three decades he never strayed from it, but those records that the band released between 1968 and 1971 (plus 1973's rarities round-up Rough Edges) remained at the core of his legacy, and for good reason: not only did they illustrate the breadth and depth of Sahm's ambition, they're simply dynamic rock & roll, truly visionary American roots music. What separated the Sir Douglas Quintet from their blues-rock, country-rock and hippie contemporaries is that there wasn't a shred of pretention in their music. All the genre bending and unpredictable juxtapositions flowed naturally, performed with the muscle of a roadhouse blues band and the warm, welcoming vibe of San Franciscan rockers. Of all their peers, the Band were the closest touchstone, in terms of scope and achievement, but the Sir Douglas Quintet lacked that quintet's American gothic literary bent. They were simply a rock & roll band, out to have a good time and have others follow. As such, they never got quite as much critical respect in the traditional rock history books as they deserved, but the six LPs they released for Smash/Mercury constitute one of the strongest bodies of work for an American rock & roll band of the '60s.

Even if they were terrific, these Smash/Mercury records weren't always easy to find (which may be another reason why the Sir Douglas Quintet weren't given much credit in rock histories; critics can't review what they can't hear). They went out of print in the '70s and they were never reissued during the great CD-reissue boom of the late '80s and early '90s (they were compiled on the 22-track 1990 CD Best of Doug Sahm & the Sir Douglas Quintet 1968-1975). None of these LPs saw CD release until 2002, when Raven in Australia released 1970's 1+1+1=4 and 1971's The Return of Doug Saldaña on one CD, and the U.K.-based Acadia released all the albums -- the aforementioned pair, plus 1968's Sir Douglas Quintet+2=Honkey Blues, 1969's Mendocino and 1970's Together After Five -- with bonus tracks, which eventually covered everything that was on Rough Edges plus a few other odds and ends. This was a blessing, not just for longtime Sir Douglas fans but for the curious who never had a chance to easily hear this wonderful music, and their release has the unfortunate side-effect of making Hip-O Select's splendid five-disc box set The Complete Mercury Masters seem just a bit anti-climatic. Released just two years after the 2002 reissue campaign, The Complete Mercury Masters is housed in a hardcover book-sized wallet and contains all the music from the Acadia reissues, along with a handful of rarities, of varying interest. These rarities include a country version of "Texas Me," the four-song Mexican EP by the Quintet (featuring Spanish versions of four tunes, including "Mendocino" and "And It Didn't Even Bring Me Down"), a single Sahm produced for Roy Head and four Sahm-produced sides for Junior Parker, plus an entire disc of mono-single mixes. All this is good, especially the Sahm productions, but it's not material that's significant, particularly for those who already own the Acadia reissues. Those fans may be reluctant to spend $100 to get material they bought recently, even if the packaging on The Complete Mercury Masters is handsome and the sound is a considerable improvement on the Acadia issues (nevertheless these recordings will never sound amazing -- they were recorded cheaply and no amount of cleaning can make these tapes sound full-bodied. Also, part of the music's appeal is that it's greasy, gritty, and dirty, so some listeners might actually find the grungier Acadia mixes more appealing, even if the sound on this set is hardly clean and is faithful to the original records). For those listeners, purchasing The Complete Mercury Masters is a judgment call -- are the rarities, the mono mixes and the remastering worth replacing your existing CDs? -- but for anybody that doesn't own the Acadia titles, this is flat-out essential. The converted already know how terrific these Smash/Mercury LPs are, and will be glad to get them all in one place, but this is a necessary purchase even for the curious, since this is tremendous music that gets stronger, better with age. The Complete Mercury Masters may be expensive, but consider it an investment that will pay you back tenfold, since this is truly priceless and timeless music.



01 - Are Inlaws Really Outlaws 03:18

02 - Sell A Song 05:28

03 - Song Of Everything 04:07

04 - Can You Dig My Vibrations 03:18

05 - I'm Glad For Your Sake (But I'm Sorry For Mine) 03:41

06 - Whole Lotta Peace Of Mind 06:02

07 - You Never Get Too Big And You Sure Don't Get Too Heavy, That You Don't 03:43

08 - Suzie Q 02:08

09 - San Antonio Rose 02:24

10 - Mendocino 02:41

11 - I Don't Want 03:54

12 - I Wanna Be Your Mama Again 03:03

13 - At The Crossroads 04:33

14 - If You Really Want Me To I'll Go 02:40

15 - And It Didn't Even Bring Me Down 02:32

16 - Lawd, I'm Just A Country Boy In This Great Big Freaky City 02:52

17 - She's About A Mover 03:17

18 - Texas Me 02:38

19 - Oh, Baby, It Just Don't Matter 03:17

20 - Sunday Sunny Mill Valley Groove Day [Outtake] 03:29

21 - Dynamite Woman [Single] 03:44

22 - Too Many Docile Minds [Single] 02:31


01 - Nuevo Laredo 02:40

02 - Dallas Alice 03:14

03 - T-Bone Shuffle 03:06

04 - I Don't Want To Go Home 03:04

05 - Medley: Son Of Bill Baety 04:49

06 - Backwood's Girl 05:01

07 - Revolutionary Ways 02:30

08 - Seguin 02:46

09 - If She'd Only Come To Me 06:47

10 - Magic Illusion 02:50

11 - Medley: One Too Many Mornings - Got To Sing A Happy Song 05:06

12 - Yesterday Got In The Way 03:08

13 - In The Dark 03:02

14 - Don't Bug Me!, Pts. 1-2 04:03

15 - Be Real 02:36

16 - Pretty Flower 04:13

17 - What About Tomorrow? 02:30

18 - Catch The Man On The Rise 02:19

19 - Tortilla Flats 02:46

20 - A Nice Song 02:57

21 - Monterey Sun 01:13

22 - Sixty Minutes Of Your Love 02:29

23 - I Wanna Be Your Mama Again [Single Session Outtake] 02:22

24 - I Don't Want To Go Home [Single B-Side] 02:46


01 - Texas Me [Single Session Outtake] 02:13

02 - Preach What You Live Live What You Preach 02:45

03 - She's Huggin' You, But She's Lookin' At Me 03:03

04 - Keep Your Soul 03:13

05 - Papa Ain't Salty 03:57

06 - Stoned Faces Don't Lie 04:39

07 - Me And My Destiny 03:15

08 - Wasted Days, Wasted Nights 03:41

09 - The Railpak Dun Done In The Del Monte 03:56

10 - Oh Lord, Please Let It Rain In Texas 02:45

11 - The Gypsy 03:36

12 - Michoacan [Single] 03:22

13 - Westside Blues Again [Single B-Side] 06:21


01 - Sir Doug's Recording Trip 04:02

02 - You're Doin' It Too Hard 03:52

03 - The Homecoming 03:21

04 - Soulful Woman 03:35

05 - Too Many Docile Minds 02:32

06 - Southside Girls 02:22

07 - Hello Amsterdam 02:49

08 - Spearfish By Night 03:10

09 - Colinda 02:29

10 - Linda Lou 03:34

11 - Dynamite Woman 03:46

12 - Leaving Kansas City 04:36

13 - At The Crossroads [Alternate Mix] 04:40

14 - Texas Me [Alternate Mix] 02:38

15 - Mendocino [Spanish Version] 02:54

16 - Que Sera Mañana (What About Tomorrow) 02:30

17 - Nuevo Laredo [Spanish Version] 02:45

18 - La Luna Fue Culpable (And It Didn't Even Bring Me Down) [Spanish Version] 02:23

19 - Ain't Goin' Down Right [Single] 03:32

20 - Lovin' Man On Your Hands [Single B-Side] 02:16

21 - Lovin' Man On Your Hands [Single] 02:46

22 - Reconsider Baby [Single B-Side] 02:14

23 - Your Bag Is Bringing Me Down 02:45

24 - Movin' Out 02:06


01 - Are Inlaws Really Outlaws 03:18

02 - Sell A Song [Mono Single] 05:26

03 - Mendocino [Mono Single] 02:45

04 - I Wanna Be Your Mama Again [Mono Single] 02:59

05 - It Didn't Even Bring Me Down [Mono Single] 02:30

06 - Lawd, I'm Just A Country Boy In This Great Big Freaky City [Mono Single] 02:46

07 - Dynamite Woman [Mono Single] 03:43

08 - Too Many Dociled Minds [Mono Single] 02:28

09 - At The Crossroads [Mono Single] 03:34

10 - Texas Me [Mono Single] 02:39

11 - Neuvo Laredo [Mono Single] 02:39

12 - I Don't Want To Go Home [Mono Single] 03:07

13 - Be Real [Mono Single] 02:37

14 - I Don't Want To Go Home [Mono Single] 02:46

15 - What About Tomorrow? [Mono Single] 02:31

16 - (I Found Love) A Nice Song [Mono Single] 02:55

17 - Catch The Man On The Rise [Mono Single] 02:21

18 - Pretty Flower [Mono Single] 04:11

19 - Me And My Destiny [Mono Single] 03:19

20 - Wasted Days, Wasted Nights [Mono Single] 03:40

21 - Michoacan [Mono Single] 03:22

22 - Westside Blues Again [Mono Single] 06:18

Gamble for more Doug Sahm & The Sir Douglas Quintet


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