"Swamp pop" pioneer Bobby Charles is perhaps best know for writing songs that became hits for others, like "See You Later Alligator" for Bill Haley and "Walking To New Orleans" for Fats Domino. But in 1971, the Louisiana native moved to Woodstock, New York and recorded an overlooked masterpiece that combines Charles' Cajun roots with R&B; and country influences on ten timeless tracks. Released in 1972 on Bearsville Records, Bobby Charles features Charles leading a session stacked with top-shelf talent, including Mac "Dr. John" Rebennack, pedal steel ace Ben Keith, guitarist Amos Garrett, saxophonist David Sanborn, as well as Levon Helm, Rick Danko, Richard Manuel, and Garth Hudson of The Band. This "lost" classic with a three-disc Deluxe Edition that combines a remastered version of the original with a wealth of unreleased material recorded during those sessions and others recorded at Bearsville Studios throughout 1974. The set closes with a newly unearthed, 30-minute interview Charles did that was recorded shortly before the Bobby Charles album was released in August 1972. Along with the original album, the first disc also features "New Mexico," "Homemade Songs," "Rosie," and the single version of "Small Town Talk" four songs that first surfaced on the now out-of-print import, Bearsville Box Set. Four unreleased tracks are also included on the first disc: "Save Me Jesus," (mono single version); "He's Got All The Whiskey" (long version); "Don't Be Surprised" and "You Were There." The set's second disc contains 17 tracks for more than an hour of unreleased music. It begins with four songs from the Bobby Charles sessions: take one of "He's Got All The Whiskey"; a demo for "New Mexico"; plus a pair of languid country shuffles "Homemade Songs" and "Done A Lot Of Worse Things" that rank among Charles' finest work. The remainder of the disc gathers more than a dozen songs Charles recorded with producer Paul Rothchild at Bearsville Studio in 1974, including the New Orleans pop and R&B; of "Better Days," "Jealous Kind" and "Whatever Happened" and the Southern funk of "Please Please" and "Why Are People Like That."
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Includes rare 30 minute interview with Charles