The Wichita Train Whistle Sings
Small pressing Nesmith Solo CD available from Videoranch
Originally recorded in 1967 - Remastered from vinyl LP

     First things first: What is this album?  When I bought it, all I knew was that it was an instrumental album, no vocals.  Well, that's true.  Some of the songs make me think of Lawrence Welk, and some are kind of big band.  I don't have the appropriate musical vocabulary to describe some of the songs.  You Just May Be The One is done a la Marching Band, whereas part of Nine Times Blue is surprisingly up beat and up tempo.  A song called Don't Cry Now (a song I am not familiar with in any other form) has some cool banjo.

Track List:
        1. Nine Times Blue
        2. Carlisle Wheeling
        3. Tapioca Tundra
        4. Don't Call On Me
        5. Don't Cry Now
        6. While I Cried
        7. Papa Gene's Blues
        8. You Just May Be The One
        9. Sweet Young Thing
        10. You Told Me

    A certain amount of organ on some songs makes me think of church hymns, but the drums are pretty rock 'n' roll most of the time.  There's a lot of... er, artistic dischord in places.  A lot of horns, too.  I think most of the musicians are playing trumpets, now that I think about it.  A lot of the songs are recognizable as their Monkees counterpart (think that this was recorded toward the end of the Pisces, Aquarius recording sessions) but are in a different style or tempo, or the main melody line is buried in the other music.  Tapioca Tundra has got an annoying sound that I associate with typewriters or newspaper offices in movies... dit dit dit dit dit dit.... at times.  But it doesn't bother me much.  This album is an oddity in the Nesmith pantheon, really.  And completist me, I had to have it.  I like quirky, eclectic things (that's why I like Mike, he's quirky... and breathtakingly hot) and this is definately a quirk in the Nesmith solo career.  It's kind of his first solo album, if you don't count the Michael Blessing singles.

    THE BOTTOM LINE:  I think it's a groovy CD.  Videoranch didn't have MP3s up when I ordered this, but they might now or soon.  Michael released this on CD grudgingly, so it's a small pressing, mostly to appease those who requested it.  It's not as expensive as most of the obscure CDs I buy, a reasonable $17 or so.  I'm sure this isn't for all tastes, but it does appeal to me on more than just an I'm-in-love-with-Mike basis.  I like it a lot -- enough that I have it in my alarm clock.  I've listened to it several times since I bought it, and I'm very happy with it.  Still, if Videoranch has MP3s up, I'd try before I buy, if you get my drift.

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