Review : Ray Stevens - Encyclopedia of Recorded Comedy Music
Country WeeklyRay Stevens is no fool. The savvy businessman has been rerecording his best-loved comedy songs for rerelease on his own Clyde Records, named for the camel that sent him on his now-five-decade trek across the sands of success, courtesy of 1962’s “Ahab, the Arab.”
But what he did next is almost crazy: Ray began rerecording several decades’ worth of comedy songs, saluting the genre with which he’s most associated. His fascinating Encyclopedia of Recorded Comedy Music contains eight discs’ worth of musical history (plus a bonus disc and informative book) and explores an intriguingly broad definition of comedy, from country and pop oddities to parodies, holiday novelties and any song that delivers fun.
Ray’s consummate musical skills are evident in the tasteful liberties he takes on certain songs as well as the detail he captures when copying original versions—especially his own hits. Most impressive are Ray’s versatile vocal characterizations, which bring these remakes to hilarious life....full text
Music New NashvilleIn years past, encyclopedias were sold door-to-door and every family who wanted to give their kid an edge in school had a set in their bookcase. There will soon be a new encyclopedia on the market but it won’t be sold door-to-door. This one is for every kid at heart who wants to revisit the fabulous “Golden Era” of recorded comedy music, or share it for the first time with others they love.
GRAMMY Award-winning comedy music icon Ray Stevens released his Encyclopedia of Recorded Comedy Music on February 28, 2012. The 9-disc, 108-song box set (released via Clyde Records Nashville and distributed through Allegro Distribution) is historic in nature in the sense that it’s a one-of-a-kind compilation and one that has never been attempted by any other artist, until now. And who better to offer the world a box of laughs than Ray Stevens?
“Recording this entire set has taken me over two years… it has been a real ‘labor-of-love,’” says Stevens from his Nashville office. “To say I was influenced by comedy records would be a big understatement. They are a major reason I am who I am musically. I had recorded a couple of regular teen-age love song records that were all the rage in the late 50s but they didn’t catch fire nationally for me so I told myself that I needed to do something different and see if I couldn’t get the ball rolling.”...full text
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