Athens, Texas local Tony Douglas made a few ripples in the Country charts back in the early 1960s, when they were still open to rootsy indie artists, but he didn't quite conquer Nashville, and instead stayed in the Lone Star State where he was a revered regional star. Here's a quick look at his work...
Tony Douglas "His 'N' Hers" (Sims Records, 1964) (LP)
(Produced by Russell Sims & Mort Thomasson)
A great set of country ballads and soft Texas shuffles, recorded at Bradley's Barn with a small, compact studio crew that included Kelso Kerston, Billy Grammar and Walter Haynes on guitar, some early piano plinking by Hargus Robbins, Willie Ackerman on drums and Autry Inman(!) on bass. Although there are traces of the Nashville Sound, overall this record has a nice, stripped down feel -- and Tony Douglas's voice has a thin, youthful tone that kind of reminds me of Hank Locklin, very unlike his later work when his voice thickened. A few cover tunes, stuff like "Window Up Above" and "Slowly," as well as many more originals, all of them quite nice. If you like classic late '50s/early '60s country ballads, you'll wanna check this one out.
Tony Douglas "Mr. Nice Guy" (Sims Records, 1966) (LP)
Tony Douglas "Heart" (Paula Records, 1967) (LP)
Tony Douglas "The Versatile Tony Douglas" (Paula Records, 1969) (LP)
Tony Douglas "Thank You For Touching My Life" (Dot, 1972) (LP)
Tony Douglas "Live At Meridian" (Cochise Records, 1977) (LP)
(Produced by Tony Douglas)
Twangster Tony Douglas recorded this live album on November 4, 1977 at the Temple Theater in Meridian, with Buddy Emmons and Randy Fouts playing in his band. There are a bunch of songs credited to T. Williamson - was that his real name?? One wonders.
Tony Douglas "Tony's Best" (Cochise Records, 1980)
(Produced by Tony Douglas)
A nice, low-key set from this Lone Star mainstay, with lightly poppy but still plenty twangy arrangements around his Hank Locklin-esque vocals. There are some uptempo numbers, but the record has a pretty mellow feel overall. The repertoire is all original, non-Nashville stuff, including six songs by Tommy Williamson, a couple co-written by Tony Douglas and other fairly obscure composers, guys that I assume were from Texas. Plenty of novelty lyrics, stuff like "She Loves The Devil Out Of Me," "Thank You For Touching My Life," the cajun-themed "Shrimpin'," and "Her House." This album never quite sizzles or clicks, but it's a solid set nonetheless -- sedate but steady, a calm, authoritative performance from a guy who's been around the block more than a few times.
Tony Douglas "Oh Lord, My God" (Cochise Records, 1981) (LP)
An all-gospel set which appears(?) to have been his last album...
Hick Music Index