Look Again To The Wind: Johnny Cash's Bitter Tears Revisited is the Pick of the Week

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With all too often a frequency I miss putting out a Pick of the Week.  There are always excuses and the last couple of weeks have their own.  I think I've mentioned here before that we recently moved to Oklahoma but have been in a sort-of hellish limbo (aka living with my parents) while we find new digs.  Last week we finally made the move.  

We were all very excited about it.  Even my daughter, which surprised me as she had a really hard time with the last move. But she was talking about it for days and wound up very disappointed that we were unable to sleep there the night we moved most of our stuff.  The next day we moved more stuff and we did sleep there and it was grand.   There is something really wonderful about living under your own roof, even if that roof isn't exactly what you wanted.

Then that roof caved in. The second night in the new pad found my daughter running a fever. It didn't go away for a couple of days so we went to the doctor's office.  They suspected strep and did a couple of swabs, tests and cultures.  If you've never had the pleasure of watching your toddler get his/her throat swabbed when they are already feeling miserable, let us pray you never have to.  It was excruciating all around.

It wasn't strep, but a virus and there's pretty much nothing you can do for a virus but wait it out.  Wait we did, sleepless night after sleepless night.  It was awful.  One night about 2 in the morning she woke up again and looked at me with the saddest eyes I've ever seen and just said, "oh daddy."  I knew what she meant - oh daddy why do I have to hurt so bad?  Oh daddy, why did I wake up?

Sometimes being a dad just breaks your heart.  After about a week we went to another doctor who essentially told us the same thing.  Wait it out.  But he was kinder and gentler and noted that this was the worst case he'd seen in awhile.  He also gave us some codeine.  Miracle drug, that.  For the first time in a week the kid slept through the night to the relief of us all.

She's now finally starting to get better and return to her ownself.  Except that she's now got a urinary track infection.  More crying.  More sleepless night.  Please god, let it all end soon.

I don't know what any of this has to do with new music or Jonnny Cash.  Johnny sure knew nights like these, and the pain of his fellow man.  He's certainly helped me through a few rough patches of my own.

Bitter Tears: Ballads of the American Indian was a very personal concept album that Cash released back in 1964.  Fifty years later some of the finest folks and country voices are lending their voices in tribute.  Folks like Gillian Welch, Steve Earle and Emmylou Harris all contributed track to pay tribute to The Man in Black and this masterful album.

Truth be told I've never actually heard this album.  I've heard about it for years and I know The Ballad of Ira Hayes, but I've never sat down with the entire thing.  I'm thinking I'll have to purchase it and this one and let them ride together.

Also out this week that looks interesting:

Influence 2: The Man I Am - Randy Travis:  I grew up hearing a lot of country music.  Mostly I raged against it as I considered myself a hard rocking' boy, but some of it seeped in anyways.  Travis was one of those fellers that seeped.  This is the second volume of cover songs from folks that influenced his writing.  This edition includes songs by Merle Haggard, Ernest Kris Kristopherson and more.

Can't Even Do Wrong Right - Elvin Bishop:  The legendary bluesman is still touring, writing and making albums.  I need some schooling in the blues so this will have to be a purchase.

Musik Die Shwer zu Twerk - Electric Wurms:  The Flaming Lips Wayne Coyne and Steven Drozd team up with psychedelic band Linear Downfall for a six song prog rock album.

Live 1966-67 - Captain Beefheart:  He's one of those guys like Frank Zappa that I know I need to check out but never really have.  

Smokey and Friends - Smokey Robinson:  Legendary Motown icon teams up with folks like Elton John, Steven Tyler, CeeLo Green and Mary J Blige.

Ske-Dat-De-Dat The Spirit of Satch - Dr. John:  Forgive me for saying Legendary one more time, but Dr. John is truly a legendary New Orleans player who pays tribute to another legend - Louis Armstrong here with the help of a long list of other New Orleans legends.

Space Invader - Ace Frehley:  I've never cared for KISS and every interview I read with Gene Simmons makes me like them even less.  What an asshole that guy is.  He essentially kicked Ace out of the band and has treated him like crap ever since.  That almost makes me want to give this a listen.  Almost.