Tuesday, March 11, 2014

"The House of the Rising Sun" by Dolly Parton

Song#:  0745
Date:  09/19/1981
Debut:  87
Peak:  77
Weeks:  4
Genre:  Country Crossover, Pop

Pop Bits:  Parton's album "9 to 5 and Odd Jobs" was her best solo effort on the pop album chart reaching #11 (hard to believe she never had a Top 10 pop album). This third single from the album couldn't muster up much support at pop and after four consecutive country #1's, it broke the streak by only reached #14.

ReduxReview:  The arrangement of this tune (courtesy of both Parton and TV theme composer Mike Post) is really quite odd. It starts with a dance thump and then moves into a dated keyboard riff followed by a gospel choir background and ending on some kind of spooky groove. I'm not sure it all works together as there is this slick-cheezy feeling to the recording that is a little hard to swallow. I dearly love my Dolly, but this is not one of her finest moments.

ReduxRating:  4/10

Trivia:  This song is considered a traditional folk song and the authorship is unknown. It's beginnings may have been rooted in English emigrants who took an old ballad and change it to the New Orleans setting. The earliest known recording of the song comes from 1934. It has been recorded by many artists including Bob Dylan, who included it on his debut album. But it was the #1 version by UK's The Animals in 1964 that brought the song to the mainstream. Detroit blues-rock band Frijid Pink also reached the Top 10 in 1970 with the song. Parton's version is the fourth to reach the charts following a #78 version by Santa Esmeralda in 1978.


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