Dolly Parton – Heartbreak Express (1982/2013)
FLAC (tracks) 24-bit/96 kHz | Time – 35:44 minutes | 708 MB | Genre: Country
Studio Master, Official Digital Download | Front Cover | © RLG – Legacy
Heartbreak Express is Dolly Parton’s 24th solo studioalbum. Released in April 1982, the album returnedParton to a more fully realized country sound, afterher late 1970s pop recordings. The album’s firstsingle, “Single Women”, a slow-tempo honkytonkballad about a singles bar, was written by SaturdayNight Live writer Michael O’Donoghue, and hadpreviously appeared in an SNL skit in late 1980. Thesingle provided a top ten single for Parton. The title cut also was a top tenhit for her. “Do I Ever Cross Your Mind” appeared as a double-A-sidedsingle, and reached #1 on the country charts in August 1982.
Although Dolly wrote eight of the ten songs and one of the other two tracks is an original song, there isn’t as much original material as one might think, because Dolly re-recorded some of her old songs for this album. The song that everybody should recognize is Release me, a song that dates back originally to the early fifties. Dolly first recorded the song in the early sixties on a small independent label, while she was sill a teenager. The version here is far superior to her earlier effort. It also features a distinctive arrangement, just enough to freshen it up without being dramatically different from the standard arrangement of the song. It has been released on CD on a Dolly covers album in America and on the Tour collection boxed set in Britain.
Dolly first recorded My blue ridge mountain boy in 1969, when it was the title track of her third RCA solo album and became a minor country hit for her. The original 1969 version is my all-time favorite Dolly recording, but this 1982 version nicely updates the song. Even though I don’t rate it quite as highly as the earlier version, I’m pleased that Dolly chose to re-record this song. A video of Emmylou Harris performing the song live can be seen on Youtube, but I don’t think she ever actually recorded the song, which is a pity. The original 1969 version is easy to find on CD.
One song that made its public debut here is Barbara on your mind. Dolly actually recorded this as a traditional country song in the sessions for her Jolene album, but it didn’t appear on the final album. So the version here was really a re-recording but we didn’t know that until Jolene was re-issued with four bonus tracks in 2007. I slightly prefer the older version, but both are excellent.
Unless and until an older version of another song here turns up on a re-issues of Dolly’s early albums, I’ll assume that the remaining six tracks really were new songs at the time of their release. Two of them (Heartbreak express, Single women) were released as singles and can be found on some of Dolly`s compilations. Pick of the other four tracks may be Hollywood potters, a song reflecting on the perils of the Hollywood entertainment business, but the other three (Prime of our love, Act like a fool, As much as always) are all excellent.
01. Heartbreak Express
02. Single Women
03. My Blue Ridge Mountain Boy
04. As Much As Always
05. Do I Ever Cross Your Mind
06. Release Me
07. Barbara On Your Mind
08. Act Like A Fool
09. Prime Of Our Love
10. Hollywood Potters