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Number 269

Ry Cooder - Into the Purple Valley (Reprise REP44142)

These days the Los Angeles-born musician Ry Cooder is known for his catalytic involvement in World Music, his encyclopedic knowledge of the real American songbook and his concentration on making memorable movie soundtracks including The Long Riders, Crossroads and Paris Texas. In the early 1970s however, Cooder produced a series a excellent solo albums that covered a whole range of styles and genres from Country Blues, Tex Mex, Jazz and 1950s Rock and Roll to name but a few. 1972s INTO THE PURPLE VALLEY concentrated on depression-era America, with the songs of Woody Guthrie, Leadbelly and George Washington Phillips, whilst adopting the Hawaiian 'slack-key' guitar method of Joseph Spence on the short instrumental Great Dream From Heaven, which would go on to be one of Cooder's most familiar styles.