Marie writes in her liner notes: I’m not a writer and I feel it best to leave it to those who are truly remarkable at their craft. Technically and traditionally, I am a singer/songwriter advocate. However, I can count on one hand those in country music who can truly sing somebody else’s song and sing it to perfection. Marie Hodson is one of them. The Kiwi with Scot and Irish heritage and who now lives a stone’s throw from the Country Music Cap. in Australia, Tamworth, at Werris Creek, devours torch and twang like I do a bowl of icecream.
Well known for her awesome tributes to the likes of Patsy Cline and Reba McEntire, Marie can sing traditional country music songs like very few others can. I have been fortunate enough to see Marie LIVE quite a few times now, and she sells a song like it is a Broadway play. Perhaps in the last life or the next she was/will be an actress on the stage.
Some of these songs are well known, some aren’t. Modern Country Music hero, Joshua Hedley, has two songs featured on here, and he is the real deal, (see my reviews). I saw him in Melbourne this year, and he is part of the great country music revival in America. I love Marie’s version of Funny How Time Slips Away. The Alabama song, Feels So Right is fantastic too. The Kiwi connection is strong, with my Dad’s favourite gal, Johanna Hemara featured, and Camille Te Nahu and the Blue Smoke song there. I particularly like the opening track Forget Him, written by Camille and hubby Stuart French. I was busy picking up song titles and lines, a bit like I did with Luke O’Shea’s Listen to the Words! The duet with Anthony Taylor, After the Fire is Gone is pretty much necessary, considering their similar styles and Anthony and Marie’s mutual admiration for each other’s work.
Although Marie sings other’s songs, she doesn’t always make obvious choices in songs, just songwriters. Nobody’s Darlin’ but Mine fits her like a glove. There had to be a Merle song, there just had to be….I didn’t mean to love you is a great choice. The title track is a classic that every country music fan should know, if they don’t, they should seriously consider following another genre, it is known to those outside country music circles. It is probably the most covered song on the album. I would love to know why Marie called the album this, however, considering the meaning of the song. I would have perhaps chosen I Didn’t Mean to Love You or Funny How Time Slips Away (considering that it is supposedly her last album).
Bill Anderson has written some great songs, it is nice to see him featured on here. Walkout Backwards is a song that my Dad often played when I was a kid. It has some great lyrics.
If this is Marie’s last album, it is a Hell of a way to go out. Say it isn’t so! I know a lot of people who love listening to Marie sing and perform LIVE. They are from all walks of life and they are all ages. That is unusual, considering that Marie sings the more traditional style.
As usual, she gets the balance right. That is not easy. Thank you for the music, Marie.
Forget Him (Camille Te Nahu and Stuart French)
This Time (Joshua Hedley)
Funny How Time Slips Away (Willie Nelson)
Mr Jukebox (Joshua Hedley)
Feels So Right (Randy Owen)
I Got Lucky With You (Emily Miller)
Nobody’s Darlin’ But Mine (Jimmi Davis)
After the Fire is Gone (Duet with Anthony Taylor) (L.E. White)
Walking the Floor Over You (Ernest Tubb)
I Didn’t Mean to Love You (Merle Haggard and Red Lane)
Walkout Backwards (Bill Anderson)
Blue Smoke ( Ruru Karaitiana)
Produced, Mixed and Mastered by Steve Newton (Enrec Studios)
Co-Producer: Marie Hodson
Musos: Stuart French, Jason Roller, Greg Franks, Brad Bergen, Ron Mahony, Justin Branum, Michel Rose, Mike Johnson, Liam Kennedy, Andrew McMahon, Artie Taylor with Johanna Hemara and James Craswell on Harmonies and Anthony Taylor