Bobbie Gentry's Oft Overlooked Masterpiece, "The Delta Sweete" Reissued As Expanded Edition With 10 Bonus Tracks And New Stereo Mix - Out Now Via Capitol/UMe

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BOBBIE GENTRY’S OFT OVERLOOKED MASTERPIECE, THE DELTA SWEETE, REISSUED AS EXPANDED EDITION WITH 10 BONUS TRACKS AND NEW STEREO MIX

 

AVAILABLE NOW VIA CAPITOL/UMe ON 2CD WITH ADDITION OF ORIGINAL MONO MIX, 2LP AND DIGITALLY

 

LISTEN TO THE ALBUM ALONG WITH TIM BURGESS (THE CHARLATANS UK), GRASSHOPPER (MERCURY REV), MARGO PRICE, BETH ORTON AND PRODUCER ANDREW BATT TODAY AT NOON PDT VIA TIM’S TWITTER LISTENING PARTY

 

“This remastered version swings and shimmers in all the right places.” 9/10 – UNCUT

 

**** A beautiful album. Every bit as engrossing as her breakthrough.” ★★★★ – MOJO

 

“Peculiar and ambitious...Don't overlook it this time around.” ★★★★ – RECORD COLLECTOR

 

“The Delta Sweete more than lives up to its billing as a lost classic. The ten extra cuts make it even more rewarding. There's not a bad cut on either CD.” 9/10 – POPMATTERS

 

“A sympathetic redux... this set represents Bobbie Gentry at her mysterious beguiling best.” ★★★★★ – SHINDIG!

 

Los Angeles – July 31, 2020 Bobbie Gentry’s oft overlooked brilliant, conceptual masterpiece The Delta Sweete has been expanded and is now available as a deluxe edition on CD, LP and digitally via Capitol/UMe. The release comes on the heels of 2018’s GRAMMY®-nominated The Girl From Chickasaw County box set which reacquainted the world with the beguiling work of the enigmatic singer-songwriter who became one of the most iconic and influential artists of the 1960s and 70s and then in the early ‘80s made her final appearance and disappeared from the public eye completely, never to return.

 

Early reviews of the new deluxe editions have been nothing short of glowing with Uncut awarding the album a 9/10 and remarking, “This remastered version swings and shimmers in all the right places.” MOJO hailed it as a “beautiful album. Every bit as engrossing as her breakthrough” in their four-star review while Record Collector called it “Peculiar and ambitious,” urging, “don't overlook it this time around. Shindig! gushed, “A sympathetic redux... this set represents Bobbie Gentry at her mysterious beguiling best” and Popmatters enthused, “The Delta Sweete more than lives up to its billing as a lost classic. The ten extra cuts make it even more rewarding. There's not a bad cut on either CD. It's a sweet deal, to be sure.”

 

The expanded CD edition of The Delta Sweete features a new stereo mix of the album (sourced directly from the original four-track and eight-track tapes) by Andrew Batt, the GRAMMY®-nominated producer/compiler behind the acclaimed The Girl From Chickasaw County retrospective, alongside the original mono mix making its debut on CD. There are a total of 10 bonus tracks to treasure, including the previously unreleased original demo, “The Way I Do,” and a special instrumental version of “Okolona River Bottom Band” featuring the great Shorty Rogers on bass trumpet. The deluxe vinyl marks the first official repress of the album since 1972 and features the new stereo mix on LP1 and the 10 bonus tracks on LP2. Listen to or purchase The Delta Sweete here: https://bobbiegentry.lnk.to/TheDeltaSweete

 

Released in February 1968, barely six months after Gentry’s debut LP, The Delta Sweete may not have contained anything as career-defining as the song “Ode to Billie Joe,” but it represented a definite step forward in its musical ambition: A multi-faceted, quasi-concept album, where each track blurred, dreamlike, into the next, the songs evoked the melancholy adolescent world of Gentry’s childhood in Chickasaw County while further deepening her fascination with loss, illusion and the often comic absurdity of the conventions of everyday life. Even the album’s name was pure Gentry, the “Sweete” in the title punning on both Gentry’s southern belle good looks (a pretty girl in the South might be referred to as a sweete) and the album’s musical song structure. The artwork also poetically evoked the music it contained, featuring a double exposure of a contemplative black and white image of Gentry in tight close-up, superimposed onto a color photo of a run-down shack taken on her grandparents’ farm where she grew up.

 

West Coast jazz pioneer Shorty Rogers was a notable addition to the Gentry sound, helping to move The Delta Sweete away from the largely acoustic feel of her debut, and together they opened up her songs to a broader pallet of instrumentation. The strings were once again orchestrated by Jimmie Haskell whose memorable arrangement on “Ode to Billie Joe,” would win him a GRAMMY® in the spring of ‘68. The great Elvis TCB band leader James Burton features on guitar and Hal Blaine is socking it on drums. The resulting production gave Gentry a unique and distinctive sound that merged country, soul, chamber-pop and psychedelia, quite unlike anyone else. The album begins back “in Chickasaw land” with the swampy southern groove of “Okolona River Bottom Band” and progresses through a mixture of originals such as “Reunion,” “Jessye’ Lisabeth,” “Refractions” and “Mornin’ Glory,” entwined with some carefully chosen covers like Mose Allison’sParchman Farm” and two of Willie Dixon’s – “Big Boss Man” and session outtake, “The Seventh Son.” Other bonus tracks included Gentry’s beautifully laid-back demo of the Anthony Newley/Leslie Bricusse classic, “Feelin’ Good,” and an alternate version of her own “Mississippi Delta” that was originally intended to close out the LP’s second side.

 

Whilst the album flopped commercially upon its original release, today The Delta Sweete is considered by fans and critics alike to represent the pinnacle of Gentry’s artistry; recently placed 4th in Uncut magazine’s “Ultimate Genre Guide” to the top 40 singer-songwriter albums of all time, the album is justly acknowledged as one of the great previously unsung masterpieces of the ‘60s. Just over 50 years after its release, US indie rock band Mercury Rev with special guests that included Hope Sandoval, Beth Orton, Vashti Bunyan, Laetitia Sadler and Lucinda Williams paid homage with their re-recorded tribute album, The Delta Sweete Revisited, helping a whole new audience to discover the brilliance of Gentry’s Delta soul. Mercury Rev frontman Jonathan Donahue described Gentry’s original LP as “a gem of an album. It feels like an island that someone left off a map. It was always flourishing and is still vibrantly alive… It’s just that people didn’t know to sail over there to see it.” The Delta Sweete is now firmly back on the map, and many more will be ready to make that journey - if you haven’t already, it’s time to set sail.

 

Coinciding with today’s release, The Delta Sweete will feature on Tim’s Twitter Listening Party today at noon PM PDT/3 pm EDT/8 pm BST. Fans are encouraged to push play on the album at the same time however they prefer to listen to enjoy the album in real time with fans all over the world and a stacked panel hosted by Tim Burgess of The Charlatans UK, and Grasshopper of Mercury Rev who will be joined by Margo Price and Beth Orton who were guest vocalists on his Delta Sweete Revisited project. The panel will be rounded out by Andrew Batt, producer of the remixed deluxe edition of The Delta Sweete. To take part in the discussion follow Burgess and the relevant Twitter accounts of the panel and use the hashtag #timstwitterlisteningparty to share memories or ask questions in real-time.

 

THE DELTA SWEETE DELUXE EDITION 2LP TRACK LISTING

 

LP1

SIDE A

1. Okolona River Bottom Band – (Remixed 2020)

2. Big Boss Man – (Remixed 2020)

3. Reunion – (Remixed 2020)

4. Parchman Farm – (Remixed 2020)

5. Mornin' Glory – (Remixed 2020)

6. Sermon – (Remixed 2020)

 

SIDE B

1. Tobacco Road – (Remixed 2020)

2. Penduli Pendulum – (Remixed 2020)

3. Jessye' Lisabeth – (Remixed 2020)

4. Refractions – (Remixed 2020)

5. Louisiana Man – (Remixed 2020)

6. Courtyard – (Remixed 2020)

 

LP2

SIDE C

1. Okolona River Bottom Band – (Instrumental) – Previously unreleased

2. Mississippi Delta – (Alternate version) – First time on vinyl

3. Seventh Son – (Band Version) – First time on vinyl

4. The Way I Do – (Demo) – Previously unreleased

5. Feelin' Good – (Demo) – First time on vinyl

 

SIDE D

1. Mornin' Glory – (Demo) – First time on vinyl

2. Sermon – (Demo) – First time on vinyl

3. Jessye' Lisabeth – (Demo) – First time on vinyl

4. Refractions – (Demo) – First time on vinyl

5. Louisiana Man – (Demo) – First time on vinyl

 

THE DELTA SWEETE DELUXE EDITION 2CD TRACK LISTING

 

CD1

1. Okolona River Bottom Band – (Remixed 2020)

2. Big Boss Man – (Remixed 2020)

3. Reunion – (Remixed 2020)

4. Parchman Farm – (Remixed 2020)

5. Mornin' Glory – (Remixed 2020)

6. Sermon – (Remixed 2020)

7. Tobacco Road – (Remixed 2020)

8. Penduli Pendulum – (Remixed 2020)

9. Jessye' Lisabeth – (Remixed 2020)

10. Refractions – (Remixed 2020)

11. Louisiana Man – (Remixed 2020)

12. Courtyard – (Remixed 2020)

13. Okolona River Bottom Band – (Instrumental) –Previously unreleased

14. Mississippi Delta – (Alternate Version)

15. Seventh Son – (Band Version)

16. The Way I Do – (Demo) – Previously unreleased

17. Feelin' Good – (Demo)

 

CD2

1. Okolona River Bottom Band – (Mono)

2. Big Boss Man – (Mono)

3. Reunion – (Mono)

4. Parchman Farm – (Mono)

5. Mornin' Glory – (Mono)

6. Sermon – (Mono)

7. Tobacco Road – (Mono)

8. Penduli Pendulum – (Mono)

9. Jessye' Lisabeth – (Mono)

10. Refractions – (Mono)

11. Louisiana Man – (Mono)

12. Courtyard – (Mono)

13. Mornin' Glory – (Demo)

14. Sermon – (Demo)

15. Jessye' Lisabeth – (Demo)

16. Refractions – (Demo)

17. Louisiana Man – (Demo)

 

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