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Marshall Tucker Band - Searchin' For A Rainbow
Review By: Jim Moulton, CSO Staff Journalist

This album finds the boys with a more country sound than ever. Toy Caldwell had just learned how to play pedal steel, and they had the help of Dickey Betts playing lead on the title track. Also, Charlie Daniels adds his fiddle to the mix. It's so sweet to hear these Shout Factory Remasters of the Marshall Tucker Band in their prime. This cowboy hat wearing rock group made an album that a country fan would love. On the beautiful title track, "Searchin' For A Rainbow," Dickey Betts really gives it up nicely on guitar with Charlie Daniels playing some super fiddle. I love the way McCorkles' acoustic rhythm blends in so well.

"Fire On The Mountain" written by George McCorkle is a really great song. Toy is so cookin' on this disc, he is such a great electric guitarist. Never a better chicken picker than Toy. I remember one night in Wildwood, N.J., the boys were playin', and I was about twenty feet from Toy. He is so amazing, his style, and the emotive tones he gets out of that Les Paul. I never saw anyone play every note with their thumb. The imagery of these songs is all about the South and life in a different era. An eclectic mix of country and swing on this disc.

"Bob Way My Blues" is a western swing song, such countrified lyrics and Gray's vocals are so strong. McCorkle once again, playing some great acoustic and Toy's back on pedal steel.

By the way, Producer Paul Hornsby plays piano on most tracks, very fluid sounding. Only eight tracks on the original record, but remember, you could only put twenty minutes on a side, there is a bonus track here. Oh yeah, the eighth original track is a great live version of "Can't You See," a song already on another album that did so good for them. Toy sings on this and plays incredible blues guitar on this country blues kicker.

"Bound and Determined" is another western swing song with some great sax by Jerry Eubanks. Most of the songs on the record are pretty laid back until you come to "Can't You See," which the band tears up. Hank Williams Jr. performed with them at a show in Birmingham, 1974. The band had a lot of support from Waylon Jennings, who covered "Can't You See". Randy Owens of Alabama says that Marshall Tucker was a key influence in his music.

"Fire On The Mountain" was released as a single and actually hit the top forty pop charts at #38. This old time country sounding tune with a harder rock beat and Gray's strong vocals and the song's many great hooks, both vocal and instrumental helped it to become probably McCorkles' strongest Song. Great pedal steel by Caldwell and flute by Eubanks also helped this song. The album went Gold and it was one of their best studio albums along with Carolina Dreams.

Shout Factory (2004,1975)
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