Country comedy -- especially "classic" country comedy -- is kind of a tough nut to crack. Don Bowman (1937-2013) was better than most... less musical but more biting than Homer & Jethro, less rednecky than Archie Campbell... And sometimes he was even kinda funny! Here's a quick look at his work...
Don Bowman "Our Man In Trouble" (RCA, 1964) (LP)
Don Bowman "Fresh From The Funny Farm" (RCA, 1965) (LP)
Don Bowman "Funny Way To Make An Album" (RCA, 1966) (LP)
Don Bowman "Don Bowman -- Recorded Almost Live" (RCA, 1967) (LP)
Don Bowman "From Mexico With Laughs" (RCA, 1967) (LP)
Don Bowman making fun of Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass? Oh, gosh... just look at the time! I'm afraid I've really got to run... I'm so sorry to have to miss this...
Don Bowman "Funny Folk Flops" (RCA, 1968) (LP)
(Produced by Chet Atkins & Fenton Jarvis)
This one's a muddle. Bowman has hippies and folkies mixed up, and besides the early '60s folk scene was kind of dead anyway by the time he recorded this one -- this was around the time Nashville started adding "folk music" into the mix of Nashville pop -- so the target was hardly moving anymore anyway. Mostly, though, it's just that as satire this is so random and unfocussed... He's not really lampooning folk music itself so much as just muttering over repetitive instrumental backings... The musical tropes of the folkies were a rich wellspring of mockability, but these Nashvillers just didn't "get it" enough to even get how to make fun of it... The spoofs of actual folk songs -- "In The Pines," "Greensleeves," "House Of The Rising Sun" -- are all duds. Mildly worth the trouble are the songs directly aimed at the longhairs, like the anti-hippie "The San Francisco Scene" and (to a lesser extent) "Streets Of San Francisco," which I guess I'd add to a Bowman best-of, if anyone ever asked me... Not a very interesting album, but "of it's time," I suppose.
Don Bowman "Support Your Local Prison" (RCA, 1969) (LP)
Don Bowman "Whispering Country" (RCA, 1970) (LP)
Don Bowman "All New Don Bowman" (Mega, 1972) (LP)
Don Bowman "Still Fighting Mental Health" (Lone Star, 1979) (LP)
Don Bowman "On The Road Too Long" (Lard Bucket, 1981) (LP)
Hick Music Index