Welcome to the Club [El Toro]
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While the major stars of the first era of rockabilly were almost exclusively male, that's not because there weren't plenty of cool boppin' women making the rounds, and this compilation from the Spanish El Toro label makes a convincing case that the gals were making as much good music (and getting just as wild) as the guys back in the day. One consistent theme in these 33 sides is that the women of rockabilly had lovin' on their minds and weren't shy about it, and {|Rose Maddox|}'s Wild Wild Young Men, {|Barbara Pittman|}'s I Need a Man, {|Wanda Jackson|}'s Hot Dog! That Made Him Mad, and {|Dottie Jones|}' Honey Honey Honey display a healthy, red-blooded sensual appetite that was hardly common for women in music in the '50s. {|Sparkle Moore|}'s Skull & Crossbones, {|the Collins Kids|}' I'm in My Teens, and {|Janis Martin|}'s Let's Elope Baby are a bit more subdued, but still celebrate edgier attitudes and behaviors than one might expect -- it's no wonder radio didn't embrace most of these tunes at the time. A few well-known names pop up on this disc, most notably {|Patsy Cline|} (with her proto- rockabilly Stop, Look and Listen) and {|Brenda Lee|} (Little Miss Dynamite belts out the classic Bigelow 6200), but lesser-known names dominate this collection and there are more than a few red-hot obscurities here, ranging from straight-up rockabilly to country boogie to early white blues workouts. While many of these tracks have been sourced from vinyl and the sound quality is variable, most of the material sounds just fine, and the music is red hot fun from beginning to end; anyone looking for greater gender parity in their rockabilly collection will do well to pick this up and bop with these belles.


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