Twenty-five-song import compilation of rare Hazlewood tracks, most or all dating from the 1960s, including solo numbers (under his own name as well as the alias Mark Robinson
) and collaborations with Suzi Jane Hokom and the Shacklefords
. The most country-ish cuts are like a debauched Johnny Cash
; the bullfighter narrative "Jose" is Hazlewood at his most compellingly melodramatic; and there are shades of his Duane Eddy
roots in the more rock-oriented cuts, like the grungy "Della" and the rockabilly-tinged "Pretty Jane." There are also solo renditions of several songs that he produced for Nancy Sinatra
, although Sinatra's versions are uniformly better. You could justifiably call this the work of an idiot savant, or (at its worst) just a plain idiot, but it is, like much of Hazlewood's stuff, intriguing in its blend of '60s pop-country and eccentric production, lyrics, and vocals. There's no shred of documentation as far as dates and sources are concerned, but most of the solo material comes from1963's Trouble Is a Lonesome Town and a pair of MGM gems, Lee Hazlewood-ism: Its Cause and Cure and The Very Special World of Lee Hazlewood. But this is the best available distillation of the man's large solo output into one place, if you can find it.