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The O'Kanes
"The O'Kanes"

© Columbia

January 28 - 03, 2018

Year of Release: 1986
Rating:
  • Oh Darlin'
    (Why Don't You Care For Me No More)
  • Just Lovin' You
  • Daddies Used To Grow Up Too
  • Can't Stop My Heart From Loving You
  • Bluegrass Blues
  • Oh Lonesome You
  • When We're Gone Long Gone
  • That's All Right Mama
  • Gonna Walk That Line
  • When I Found You

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    A B C D E F G H I J K L M
    N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
    I never really followed Country music in the 1980s. Somehow, I wished I did. Comparing today's Country to the classic 1970s, and even the 1980s (now), Country music from decades ago were truly the best Country music. As of the late 1990s (and even into the 21st Century), Country music has turned to a more "Pop" sound. However, this week we go back to 1986, with a lesser-known act, The O'Kanes.

    The O'Kanes had one #1 song from their self-titled album, The O'Kanes -- "Can't Stop My Heart From Loving You." It is a very well-done song, and easily fits the standard Country sound. This 1986 release would be their debut album. Although they never had another huge hit as the one mentioned, they did release a total of four albums, from 1986 to 2000. As mentioned, they did not have any other #1 hits, they did achieve a total of four singles: "Oh Darlin (Why Don't You Care For Me No More)" (#10), their #1 hit, "Can't Stop My Heart From Loving You", "Daddies Need To Grow up Too" (#9), and "Just Lovin' You" (#5). These four songs reached the #15 in Canada. Their future albums released in 1988 (Tired Of The Runnin'" acclaimed 3 hit singles in the U.S. and and only one in Canada, and their 1990 release, "Imagine That" also acclaimed 3 hits singles, but they only charted in Canada. Their most recent album was released in 2000, The Only Years.

    "Oh Darlin (Why Don't You Care For Me No More")" starts out the album, having a definite Country sound, for the 1980s. For the rest of the album, it sounds more bluegrass. And good bluegrass it is. Ricky Skaggs was another favorite in Bluegrass music, as "Just Lovin' You" you would think that Skaggs recorded it himself. The O'Kanes have a laid back bluegrass sound on most songs here, such as "Daddies Need To Grow Up Too." Likewise, the old fashioned bluegrass on "When We're Gone, Long Gone."

    If you enjoy the O'Kanes' #1 hit, "Can't Stop My Heart From Loving You," you'll enjoy these tunes as well: "Bluegrass Blues" and "Gonna Walk The Line." You can't help but holler "Hee Haw!!" on most Country tunes, and that you could do on "Oh Lonesome You." Yet another song that should easily get the thumbs up, is their version of "That's All Right Mama," (which Elvis Presley recorded, starting his career). The bluegrass style is definitely here, and it's a classic version that everyone should hear and enjoy.

    The O'Kanes consisted of Jamie O'Hara and Kieran Kane. (Obviously, the name O'Kanes came from the last names O'Hara and Kane. They only recorded four albums; the first three from 1986 to 1990. Their last album was released in 2000. Kieran Kane charted seven singles of his own in the early 1980s. O'Hara would win a Grammy award, for co-writing the song "Grandpa (Tell Me 'Bout The Good Old Days)", which would be one of the Judds' famous hits. The O'Kanes disbanded in 1990, yet both O'Hara and Kane would pursue solo careers. Kane formed an independent record label, Dead Reckoning Records. The label was for Country music, and was established in 1994. Also with Kane, other musicians were co-founders: Kevin Welch, Mike Henderson, Tammy Rogers and Harry Stinson. More of an independent label, this was formed so the co-owners could produce their own records, without the "frustration" from other major labels.

    So, what has happened with both Jamie O'Hara and Kieran Kane? O'Hara recorded three solo albums: Rise Above It (1994), Beautiful Obsession (2001), and <>Dream Hymns (2012). All three albums were on three different labels: RCA Nashville, Valley Records, and The 18th Wave. His album Rise Above It produced four singles. These four songs also resulted into music videos. O'Hara has also written songs for other artists: Shelby Lynne, Gary Allan, and Trisha Yearwood.

    Kieran Kane had recorded albums before he was involved with The O'Kanes. He has recorded a total of 11 albums, from the years 1982 to 2009. SInce 1995, he recorded for his own Dead Reckoning label, a total of 9 albums. The name of the label would be the title of his first album for the label, in 1993. From 1981 to 1995, he has recorded a total of 12 singles. Two of these singles were not released on his albums. The remaining were from his albums Kieran Kane, Find My Way Home and Dead Reckoning. His credits also include two music videos, from the years 1993 and 1995.

    Bluegrass music is definitely outstanding on The O'Kanes first album. This is an album that should be discovered, or re-discovered by those who were already familiar with the duo. In looking at Amazon.com, the four O'Kanes albums are available on cd, at various prices.

    The O'Kanes is a fantastic bluegrass album. Highly recommended. This album will be enjoyed by all who enjoy both Bluegrass and Country music. Another highlight to mention, are their harmonies. I could imagine the Everly Brothers in this bluegrass style, if they recorded an album such as this. There isn't a main website from The O'Kanes, but more information can be learned from their Wikipedia page.




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