Louder, Loudermilk, Louder
:: Mary's Little Boy Child ::
John D. Loudermilk is a cousin of the the Loudermilk Brothers, better known as the Louvin Brothers. When I found this out, I said, "WOW!". To think that the guy who wrote Indian Reservation by Paul Revere and the Raiders and Tobacco Road by the Nashville Teens is directly related to the guys who wrote Satan Is Real floored me.
Where the Louvins came from the Appalachians in Alabama and sounded like it, Loudermilk was from the more urban environs of Durham, North Carolina and as a songwriter, was a bit of a chameleon. He wrote pop songs mainly, but could write in any number of genres. Although he was known mainly as a songwriter, he did consistently maintain a career as a solo performer throughout the 60s.
His own albums tended to contain some of his more slightly off center songs - maybe ones that couldn't be pawned off on other performers - thus, the title of this album. He did not write "Mary's Little Boy Child" however. Credit for that one goes to Jester Hairston, and it was a big holiday hit for Harry Belafonte. I guess the fact that a Christmas song should appear on the same album with songs like "To Hell With Love" and "Ma Baker's Little Acre" qualifies as bizarre, so that's cool.
Having said all that though, I think this is a beautiful little tune. Beats Mannheim Steamroller any time.