John Fogerty/The Blue Ridge Rangers

Rides Again

Fortunate Son/Verve Forecast

fogertyOn “Rides Again,” John Fogerty revisits the concept of his 1973 country covers LP, “The Blue Ridge Rangers” — this time minus the one-man band and with his name attached.

Opting to play acoustic guitar almost exclusively, he defers lead electric duties to the amazing Buddy Miller. The rest of the new Blue Ridge Rangers are Greg Leisz (steel guitar, mandolin, dobro, lap steel), Jason Mowery (dobro, mandolin, fiddle), Jay Bellarose (drums) and Dennis Crouch (bass). “Garden Party” and “When Will I Be Loved” have a different rhythm section (bassist Chris Chaney and drummer Kenny Aronoff), as well as a third guitarist (Hunter Perrin).

Whereas the first album contained classic and obscure country/folk/gospel tunes, “Rides Again” expands the range to include country-leaning songs by rock and pop artists.

An example is Rick Nelson’s “Garden Party,” easily the best track here. Nelson once covered “Almost Saturday Night,” and Fogerty’s reciprocation is made even sweeter by vocal assists from Don Henley and Timothy B. Schmit, since it was Nelson who helped paved the way for the Eagles’ country-rock success.

Other rock and pop covers include Delaney & Bonnie’s “Never Ending Song of Love”; the Everly Brothers’ “When Will I Be Loved” (with Bruce Springsteen); “Moody River,” the Gary Bruce (aka Chase Webster) song that Pat Boone rode to No. 1 in 1961; and the disc’s second-best number, John Denver’s “Back Home Again” — a rendition so fine it carries the listener like a flying cloud.

Country-standard highlights include the Kendalls’ 1977 No. 1 hit, “Heaven’s Just a Sin Away”; and “Fallin’ Fallin’ Fallin’,” a Bud Deckelman hillbilly love song that Ray Price did well by.gnm_end_bug

Tracks
1. Paradise
2. Never Ending Song Of Love
3. Garden Party
4. I Don’t Care (Just As Long As You Love Me)
5. Back Home Again
6. I’ll Be There (If You Ever Want Me)
7. Change In The Weather
8. Moody River
9. Heaven’s Just A Sin Away
10. Fallin’ Fallin’ Fallin’
11. Haunted House
12. When Will I Be Loved

Total time: 39:46

External links
artist’s website
amazon.com
iTunes Store

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