Western Star Rockabillies Volume 1, 2 & 3, Various Artists
Western Star WSRC 006, WSRC 011 & WSRC 025

Founded in the West of England just south of Bath, Western Star Studio was set up by musician and producer Alan Wilson. In addition to recording and performing live across the world with neo-rockabilly band The Sharks - a band he founded over 20 years ago - Wilson had also been busy producing other artists. Eventually he decided to quit touring and build his own studio Western Star - which opened in 2000.

From the very start the studio was a huge success and due to his background in rockabilly and previous production and session work, a lot of rockabilly musicians migrated to western star. Fours years on and the studio has become a virtual mecca for rockabilly and psychobilly recording with the business expanding to incorporate the Western Star label too.

Within a short space of time the Western Star organisation has nurtured a fantastic stable of rockin' artists. This CD contains 20 rockabilly gems, harvested from the studio vaults and from the many rockin' releases that have originated from the busy studio. With new rockabilly albums being recorded every month, this collection only just scratches the surface, so you can bet there's much more to follow.

Included are tracks by renown artists such as Bill Fadden, The Blue J's and Mystery Gang Trio, who are already listed in our Hall of Fame. Especially Hungarian band Mystery Gang Trio is now on top of my favorite-list, since they impressed the hell out of me at the Rumburk Rumble. Both JD & The Chasers and The Heartbeats deliver 2 great tracks each with a steady beat. The album also contains a few alt versions for the hardcore collectors, and Rudy La Croix's demo version of Al Ferrier's "Let's Go Boppin' Tonight" is a cool treat. Moon Mullican's "Wedding Of The Bugs" is gracefully covered by Howlin' Wilson (no one less than Alan himself). Volume 2 includudes tracks from the fabulous Jack Rabbit Slim debut album "Sin-Uendo", and also an alternate take of "Tonight".


Tracklisting Volume 1:
Falling' For You Baby (Alt Mix) - Rudy La Croix & The All Stars
Bull By The Horns - The Heartbeats
Fools Gold - The Blue J's
Rocket-O (Alt Version) - Mystery Gang Trio
Pink 'n' Black - JD & The Chasers
Wedding Of The Bugs - Howlin' Wilson
Mission Bell - Bill Fadden & The Mostly Losers
Crazy With Love - Just Rockin'
Let's Go Boppin' (Demo Version) - Rudy La Croix & The All Stars
Sell Your Soul To The Devil - The Blue J's
One The Move - JD & The Chasers
Too Bad Baby - Bill Fadden & The Silvertone Fliers
Barking Up The Wrong Tree - The Heartbeats
I'm So Lonely (Everybody's Got A Date But Me) - Mystery Gang Trio
North Wind - Bill Fadden & The Mostly Losers
Jitter Bop Baby - JD & The Chasers
Shake Rock-A-Bop - Bill Fadden & The Silvertone Fliers

Tracklisting Volume 2:
Cherry Pie - Jack Rabbit Slim
Eager Beaver Baby - The Rockin' Bandits
I Wanna Hold My Baby - Bill Fadden & The Silvertone Fliers
Big Fool - Rudy La Croix & The All Stars
All I Can Do Is Cry - JD & The Chasers
Evil Rhythm - Mystery Gang Trio
Tonight (Alt. take) - Jack Rabbit Slim
Honky Tonk Gal - The Rockin' Bandits
Silence Baby - Bill Fadden & The Silvertone Fliers
Hula Love - Chuck & The Hulas
That Girl Of Mine - Rudy La Croix & The All Stars
Red Hot (Demo) - Mystery Gang Trio
A Little Peace Of Mind - Bill Fadden & The Silvertone Fliers
Careful Baby - JD & The Chasers
Don't Bug Me Baby - The Blue J's
Fool About You - The Rockin' Bandits
My Sweet Speckled - Rudy La Croix & The All Stars
Doin' All Right - Jack Rabbit Slim
La Mesa Prison Blues - Bill Fadden & The Mostly Losers
Long Blonde Hair - The Heartbeats

Tracklisting Volume 3:
High Tone Woman - Jack Rabbit Slim

Heartbreakin' Mama
- Bill Fadden & The Rhythm Busters
Done Gone
- The Rockin' Bandits
Bow My Back - The Kansas City Cryers
What I Did Wrong
- Rudy La Croix & The All Stars
Too Late - Sue Moreno & Jack Rabbit Slim

Just A-Waitin'
- Bill Fadden & The Mostly Losers
Baron Boogie - The Bonneville Barons
Rock, Roll, Jump & Jive
- The Rockin' Bandits
Just Too Late - Graham Fenton & The All Stars
Too Many Lovers - Bill Fadden & The Rhythm Busters
Lucky 13 - The Bonneville Barons
Lonesome Rider - The Kansas City Cryers
Cinderella Story - Sue Moreno & Jack Rabbit Slim
You Made A Hit - Bill Fadden & The Rhythm Busters
Wild 'n' Pretty
- Rudy La Croix & The All Stars
Ride That Mine Cart - The Bonneville Barons
Friday & Saturday Night
- The Rockin' Bandits
Huh Babe - Bill Fadden & The Rhythm Busters
Wild Cave Woman - Jack Rabbit Slim

Related weblinks:
Jack Rabbit Slim - http://www.jackrabbitslim.co.uk 
Rudy La Croix - http://www.theallstars.freeserve.co.uk 
The Heartbeats - http://www.theheartbeats.co.uk 
Howlin' Wilson - http://www.the-sharks.co.uk 
Ugly Dog Skiffle Combo - http://www.uglydog.co.uk 

Western Star Recording Company
P.O. Box 1441
Bristol BS39 7ZN
United Kingdom

Mystery Gang Trio at the Rumburk Rumble, Czech Republic 2004
(photo by The BlackCat)

Reviewed by The BlackCat, 2004/2005/2008
Additional information from liner notes.