The Delmore Brothers, the Stanley Brothers, the Monroe Brothers, and the Blue Sky Boys were all undeniably great. But Charlie and Ira Louvin may well have been the best brother-and-brother bluegrass and country duo in the business.
This month, in anticipation of Charlie Louvin’s forthcoming autobiography, Seattle’s Light in the Attic Records is releasing a two-CD set that puts the Louvins’ best (and strangest) album, Satan Is Real, beside an artist’s-choice compilation assembled by Beck, Dolly Parton, Emmylou Harris, Mark Lanegan, Will Oldham, Kris Kristofferson, Graham Nash, M. Ward, Devandra Banhart, Lucinda Williams, and other Louvin Brothers fans. It’s a beautiful, extensively annotated package, and if you cue up the best songs (“The Christian Life,” which the Byrds went on to cover, is especially good), you’ll hear harmonies that would make a Beach Boy blush.
This post is from Observer Short List—an email of three favorite things from people you want to know. Sign up to receive OSL here.