From the Vault...


Michael Nesmith
"And The Hits Just Keep On Comin'"

© Awareness Records


track listing
  • Tomorrow And Me
  • The Upside
    Of Good-bye
  • Lady Love
  • Listening
  • Two Different Roads
  • The Candidate
  • Different Drum
  • Harmony Constant
  • Keep On
  • Roll With The Flow

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    Previous Review: #740
    Phil Collins--Hello, I Must Be Going
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    War--Platinum Jazz
    Michael Nesmith
    "And The Hits Just Keep On Comin'"

    Michael Nesmith's solo career has always been interesting. He was an experienced musician who auditioned for a TV show in the 1960s, called The Monkees. And even though the final four applicants didn't play instruments at first, Michael Nesmith knew he would not have any trouble in attempting to place his musical skills to work. Michael Nesmith's solo career in 1968, where he would focus his musical style towards country, as in typical country and/or California rock country, as in such acts as The Eagles and Jackson Browne. He would later become famous with video production, and in the 1980s he was the only member who did not join The Monkees' reunion tour. Years later, the original 4 Monkees recorded new songs for their album Justus. This week we take a look at Michael Nesmith's solo release from 1972, an album that was listed as one of Rock Critics' Choice: The Top 200 Albums, by Paul Gambaccini, © 1978.

    "Tomorrow And Me" features the slide steel guitar heard in many of The Eagles and Jackson Browne tunes. If you're familar with The Eagles' "Peaceful Easy Feeling," it has that kind of style, being a medium-tempo song, where the melody and harmonies on "Tomorrow And Me" is just plain beautiful, and can be a regular album cut favorite on internet and/or regular radio stations.

    Like "Tomorrow And Me," "The Upside Of Good-bye" is another peaceful song, but it doesn't feature the steel guitar as much, yet it's another off-country tune. "Lady Love" has a more Jackson Browne style, ballad style, as heard on Browne's Late For The Sky release. "Listening," "Two Different Roads" and "Keep On" identifies Nesmith's own sound, having the steel and accoustic guitars, off-country/folk music styles.

    "The Candidate" has a different sound, having a more pop accoustic sound. Towards the end, it has a slight psychedelic touch; much different than the country/folk sound throughout this entire album.

    Linda Ronstadt had her first hit, "Different Drum," a Michael Nesmith composition. Nesmith's version is here, and it is much different than Ronstadt's, having a more folkish country style, as compared to Rondstadt's pop/off-country sound. The steel guitar returns with "Harmony Constant," as it is another Jackson Browne-type ballad song, yet it's Michael Nesmith's own "sound," being country/folk, with some beautiful harmony vocalizing. The album's closing song, "Roll With The Flow" features more of the incredible steel guitar, an instrument that is not used as much as it was, in today's Country music.

    For fans of country and folk, And The Hits Just Keep On Comin' is a very relaxing "country" album to listen to. Many popular music performers can be compared here: The Eagles, Jackson Browne, Gram Parsons, and Poco. The California sound of off-country and folk music is definitely heard in Michael Nesmith's early solo career, and Nesmith's solo recording career is always interesting, as he always had an interest in country and folk music. Old-fashioned country can also be identified here, and his music is definitely different than that of The Monkees. The Monkees never did any off-country/folk songs, but if you're familiar with The Monkees' "What Am I Doing Hanging Round" and the nostalgic "Magnolia Sims," these two songs can give you some indication of how Michael Nesmith's solo career is all about. Very different than The Monkees, Country music is brought back as it used to be, decades ago, where today's Country has a more pop/rock sound. Oh, it's Country music (today's Country), but Michael Nesmith's solo career brings back old-fashioned country; traditional country with a folk music quality. Country & Western fans will definitely enjoy this album.

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    Previous Review: #740
    Phil Collins--Hello, I Must Be Going
    Next Review: #742
    War--Platinum Jazz