There was no doubt that Gram Parsons followed his own path, and after successfully wresting the equally willful Roger McGuinn onto that path for Sweetheart of The Rodeo, he left The Byrds and formed The Flying Burrito Brothers with Chris Hillman, who’d been on that path from the start.
Because people worked insanely fast back then, The Gilded Palace of Sin came out only six months after Sweetheart of The Rodeo, and kicked off with the utterly soaring “Christine’s Tune”
To me, “Christine’s Tune” is everything that you could want from country-rock: the acoustic guitars and rhythms are basically rock-oriented, but the vocals are are pure country. With Hillman in one speaker and Parsons in the other, whether singing together or singing apart they link the Everly Brothers to The Byrds to The Eagles to The Jayhawks.
Then there is “Sneaky” Pete Kleinow’s pedal steel guitar. Sometimes it’s providing commentary like you’d hear in any country song, and then suddenly, it takes off for the stratosphere like the greatest rock guitarists. You never know what it’s going to do next.
Everything about what Parsons called “Cosmic American Music” could be found in those harmonies and that guitar.
Official video for “Christine’s Tune”
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