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cover
LP $29.50

02/26/2016 826853012812 

 


Upon first glance, one could be forgiven for wondering which is the artist and which is the title of this album. Memphis' LARRY "GIMMER" NICHOLSON still remains a great unknown today, despite his having orbited the periphery of the city's music scene since the early ‘60s, playing with artists ranging from Furry Lewis to William Eggleston and influencing a young Chris Bell (Big Star). Fusing classical and folk music, the sound Gimmer created for Christopher Idylls was evocative and unusual, its chiming guitars recalling the music of centuries past while also–when recorded in 1968–being quite desperately ahead of its time. The album was recorded with TERRY MANNING (Big Star, Led Zeppelin). The tracks were laid down in 1968 in four weeks of intimate sessions at Ardent Studios that saw Gimmer experiment by feeding acoustic guitars through delay pedals, layering and layering the sound live–one of the first examples of electronic repeat being used as part of the music. The album was supposed to be the first full-length LP release on Ardent Records, but there were understandable concerns about the size of audience that might be waiting for a curious instrumental album such as this. Meanwhile, Gimmer put blocks in the road himself: he didn’t like the original mixes or the sleeve and eventually decided he didn’t want the album released at all. He got his way but, Manning argues, the influence of those chiming guitars can be heard in the sounds floating out of Memphis in the decades that followed–especially in Big Star.

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