STYLE: Country RATING OUR PRODUCT CODE: 128826-5219 LABEL: Nonesuch 7559797845 FORMAT: CD Album ITEMS: 1
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Reviewed by Tony Cummings
If you know your rock 'n' roll history, you'll know that Wanda's propulsive hit of 1958 "Let's Have A Party" is one of the most exciting rockabilly tracks ever and the only one sung by a female. By the late '60s though the singer was strung out on heroin and it took a profound Christian conversion in 1971 to change her lifestyle and launch her in a new musical direction as a country gospel singer who released several so-so albums for Word/Myrrh. It was the new interest in the US and across the world in '50s rockabilly and the originators who made it which led to Jack White, the renowned producer, guitarist and frontman of White Stripes, to reinvigorate Wanda's recording career with this fine album. Although 'The Party Ain't Over', released in 2011, didn't quite do for the 73-year-old rockabilly and country gospel singer what Rick Rubin's American albums did for Johnny Cash it did at least demonstrate to Joe Public that Wanda still had a great deal of talent unaffected by old age. The choice of songs is wonderful. After kicking off with the greatest rock 'n' roll song ever to come out of Britain, Johnny Kidd's brooding "Shakin' All Over" Wanda confidently moves onto Bob Dylan's "Thunder On The Mountain" and Eddie Cochran's "Nervous Breakdown". There's a gospel classic here too, the Bailes Brothers "Dust On The Bible" while it was a great idea to finish the set with a version of Jimmie Rodgers' "Blue Yodel #6". (If you don't know about Wanda's prowess at yodelling, read Cross Rhythms recently article.) A fine album from an amazing lady.
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