:: Maybe I Do ::
:: I Wouldn't Wait Around ::
Best known as the guy who kick-started trucker country with his 1963 hit, "Six Days on the Road", Dave Dudley enjoyed a long career despite that genre's seemingly limited scope. He grew up longing to be a baseball player, and played in the minors before an arm injury ended that dream. There was always music though, which was his other interest as a lad. He took guitar lessons at age 11, and after his retirement from Baseball, he became a DJ at a local radio station in Texas. His trademark was that he played guitar and sang along with the records he played on the air. The station manager encouraged him to play professionally, so he did.
Things were going along well until one night when he was loading his guitar into his car after a gig and was struck by a hit-and-run driver. After recuperating, he got himself a deal with an independent label, and released a single ("Maybe I Do" b/w "I Wouldn't Wait Around") which became a modest success. With one or two more successful singles for other indie labels, including the monster "Six Days...", Dudley scored a major label contract and never looked back.
His odes to truck drivers and working men in general rang true and kept him on the road himself connecting to the subject matter of his songs night after night for decades. Though he didn't write much of his own material, he sang songs by the likes of Tom T. Hall and even Kris Kristofferson to great effect. From 1965's "Truck Drivin' Son-of-a-Gun" to 1980's "Rolaids, Doan's Pills and Preparation H" there was nary a fart in the truckload.
This album is one of those cheapo, aftermarket knockoffs sold in truckstops before the days of 8-tracks and cassettes. To look at it, you'd think it's Dudley, backed by Link Wray and the Wraymen with some guy named Dick Williams thrown in for good measure. In fact it's some Dudley tunes, one or two Link Wray tracks and a few by this Williams fellow, without proper credit given anywhere on the jacket or label. Somebody's playing some really hot licks on "I Wouldn't Wait Around", but I'd be surprised if Dudley's and Wray's paths crossed in those early days. Another funny thing is that this album was apparently available in both stereo and mono versions. This one's supposed to be mono, but as you can hear, there's some kind of fake stereo going on here along the lines of the grand tradition of "Electronically Re-Channelled to Simulate Stereo", which was one of the greatest travesties foisted upon us by the illustrious recording industry. Basically, if something was recorded and mixed in mono, and that was all that was available for re-issue, they'd separate it into left and right channels by use of EQs, sending the bass to the left, and the highs to the right. This was unfortunately a very common practice, and examples can be easily found such as the Beach Boys' Pet Sounds. Hey, thanks for ruining a fucking masterpiece, Capitol Records! But I digress...