Ronnie Hawkins At The Shoals

Originally posted January 29, 2007

By 1970, the five musicians who’d been the best-known version of Ronnie Hawkins’ Hawks were long-gone, astounding the music world as The Band. So when Cotillion Records – a subsidiary of Atlantic – called, Hawkins headed down to Muscle Shoals, Alabama. Along with him came Jerry Wexler and Tom Dowd of Atlantic, who produced the eleven cuts on Hawkins’ 1970 release.

Backing the Hawk was the Muscle Shoals rhythm section: David Hood on bass, Roger Hawkins on drums and Barry Beckett and Scotty Kushnie on keyboards, along with guitarists Duane Allman, Eddie Hinton and Jimmy Johnson. Rounding out the sessions was King Biscuit Boy on harp.

The album is not all grit, showing a softer side of Hawkins than one might have expected on two Dylan covers, “One More Night,” and “One Too Many Morning,” on two Gordon Lightfoot tunes, “Bitter Green” and “Home From The Forest,” and on the country selections, “I May Never Get To Heaven,” “Little Bird,” and “Will The Circle Be Unbroken.” They’re quiet, but still, not at all poor listens.

There is grit enough, however, in the remainder of the record. “Matchbox” and “Forty Days” kick some butt, and “Down In The Alley” slides in on southern grease. And if “Who Do You Love” sounds a little tame for the first few seconds, by the time Duane Allman’s slide guitar shoots in (it can’t be anyone else’s!), the song takes off.

In balance, the album might be a little more subdued than Hawkins’ reputation might promise, but it’s still a good listen.

Track list:
One More Night
Bitter Green
I May Never Get To Heaven
Will The Circle Be Unbroken
Matchbox
Little Bird
One Too Many Mornings
Forty Days
Down In The Alley
Who Do You Love
Home From The Forest

Ronnie Hawkins – Ronnie Hawkins [1970]

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One Response to “Ronnie Hawkins At The Shoals”

  1. Sixteen Years Gone « Echoes In The Wind Archives Says:

    […] Hawkins – Ronnie Hawkins (1970) Original post here. Like this:LikeBe the first to like this […]

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