Black Cat: Gonna Shake This Shack Tonight

Black Cat: Gonna Shake This Shack Tonight

by Tommy CollinsTommy Collins


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The purpose of this compilation is, according to the liner notes, to present 30 of Collins' "earlier, for the most part more lighthearted sides." Since Bear Family already has a five-CD Collins box, and since the single-disc The Capitol Collection does a good job of collecting his most popular work, this less focused anthology is of less immediate appeal to either general fans or collectors. That's especially the case considering it has some but not all of his biggest hits, though it boasts Bear Family's typically fine packaging. If you favor the more upbeat and energetic side of 1950s hillbilly, however, this could make a good starter package or sampler. Spanning 1951 to 1960, it showcases a country singer who might not have been as seriously ruminative as the top honky tonkers, or as rowdy as the most boisterous of his peers. But he was skilled at generating consistent, energetic early exponents of the Bakersfield sound, seldom approaching rockabilly, yet steering clear of the more polished country-pop gaining traction as the '50s progressed. Collins actually did get a little raucous and raw on the earliest (and only pre-Capitol) recording here, 1951's "Campus Boogie"; "Black Cat" has a hint of a rock & roll influence; and the latest sides, recorded after his brief retreat into religious life and music, is a bit more pop crossover-conscious. Yet mid-paced numbers would be his primary calling, cleanly produced by Ken Nelson and often featuring sterling picking by top guitarists like Buck Owens, Ferlin Husky, and Billy Strange. He won't displace the likes of Owens as a kingpin of the Bakersfield sound, but those who want to dig a little deeper than the biggest names in the genre will find this CD rewarding.

Product Details

Release Date: 11/21/2011
Label: Bear Family
UPC: 4000127168979
catalogNumber: 16897
Rank: 122881


  1. Campus Boogie
  2. Black Cat
  3. That's the Way Love is
  4. Smooth Sailin'
  5. Let Down
  6. You Gotta Have a License
  7. Let Me Love You
  8. You Better Not Do That
  9. Untied
  10. I Always Get a Souvenir
  11. Whatcha Gonna Do Now
  12. I Love You More and More Each Day
  13. Love-A-Me, S'il Vous Plait
  14. You're For Me
  15. I'll Be Gone
  16. I'm Just Here To Get My Baby Out of Jail
  17. It's Nobody's Fault But Yours
  18. All of the Monkey's Ain't in the Zoo
  19. Wait a Little Longer
  20. What Kind of Sweetheart Are You
  21. A Love is Born
  22. Heart's Don't Break
  23. You Belong In My Arms
  24. It Makes No Difference Now
  25. I Guess I'm Crazy
  26. O Mary Don't You Weep
  27. Oklahoma Hills
  28. I Got Mine
  29. Back Cat
  30. Think it Over Boys

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Tommy Collins   Primary Artist,Rhythm Guitar,Leader,Vocals
Buck Owens   Guitar
Merrill Moore   Piano
Bill Woods   Fiddle
Ferlin Husky   Guitar
Ralph Mooney   Steel Guitar
Roy Nichols   Guitar
Wynn Stewart   Rhythm Guitar,Leader
Lewis Talley   Guitar,Rhythm Guitar,Leader
Bobby Austin   Bass
Helen "Peaches" Price   Drums
Billy Porter   Guitar
Johnny Gilchrist   Steel Guitar
William Everett Strange   Guitar
Glen Wilds   Guitar
Marion Z. "Pee Wee" Adams   Drums
Leonard Sipes   Rhythm Guitar,Vocals
Wanda Collins   Vocals
George French   Piano
J.R. Jelly Sanders   Fiddle
Wesley Buchanan   Guitar
Charles Lee "Fuzzy" Owen   Bass
Russell O'Neill   Fiddle
R.M. Bradshaw   Bass

Technical Credits

Jimmie Davis   Composer
Buck Owens   Composer
Floyd Tillman   Composer
Woody Guthrie   Composer
Tommy Collins   Composer,Illustrations
Jack Guthrie   Composer
Ken Nelson   Producer
Hartford Taylor   Composer
Werly Fairburn   Composer
R.A. Andreas   Illustrations
Stefan Kohne   Reissue Producer
Jack Rhodes   Composer
Wanda Collins   Composer
Andreas Merck   Photo Scanning
Karl Davis   Composer
Dick Reynolds   Composer

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