Decades Later, Bobbie Gentry’s Music is Still Charming and Vibrant

She was an easy fit for a variety of genres.

Album Review

Bobbie Gentry
The Girl from Chickasaw County—The Complete Capitol Masters
Capitol/Ume

Mississippi-born Bobbie Gentry topped the pop charts in 1967 with the languid ballad “Ode to Billie Joe,” but there was a lot more to her than this mesmerizing hit. Boasting a husky voice that blended country, pop, and soul with understated flair, she released seven solid albums, then dropped out of sight in the early 80s and hasn’t been heard from since. Compiling all of those LPs on eight discs, along with 75 previously unreleased tracks, The Girl from Chickasaw County—The Complete Capitol Masters is an imposing yet thoroughly rewarding set that makes a strong case for her greatness. Gentry’s down-home charm made her an easy fit for everything from the Beatles and jazz standards to Nashville laments and Cajun shuffles, while originals like “Fancy” show she was an understated songwriter. Hardcore fans can savor a slew of demos and BBC TV appearances, as well as foreign-language obscurities, including a Japanese version of “The Fool on the Hill.” Perhaps the most impressive thing about Gentry’s music is how fresh and vibrant it still sounds.

REAL QUICK, REAL URGENT

Minority rule, corruption, disinformation, attacks on those who dare tell the truth: There is a direct line from what's happening in Russia and Ukraine to what's happening here at home. And that's what MoJo's Monika Bauerlein writes about in "Their Fight Is Our Fight" to unpack the information war we find ourselves in and share a few examples to show why the power of independent, reader-supported journalism is such a threat to authoritarians.

Corrupt leaders the world over can (and will) try to shut down the truth, but when the truth has millions of people on its side, you can't keep it down for good. And there's no more powerful or urgent argument for your support of Mother Jones' journalism right now than that. We need to raise about $450,000 to hit our online fundraising budget in these next few months, so please read more from Monika and pitch in if you can.

payment methods

REAL QUICK, REAL URGENT

Minority rule, corruption, disinformation, attacks on those who dare tell the truth: There is a direct line from what's happening in Russia and Ukraine to what's happening here at home. And that's what MoJo's Monika Bauerlein writes about in "Their Fight Is Our Fight" to unpack the information war we find ourselves in and share a few examples to show why the power of independent, reader-supported journalism is such a threat to authoritarians.

Corrupt leaders the world over can (and will) try to shut down the truth, but when the truth has millions of people on its side, you can't keep it down for good. And there's no more powerful or urgent argument for your support of Mother Jones' journalism right now than that. We need to raise about $450,000 to hit our online fundraising budget in these next few months, so please read more from Monika and pitch in if you can.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate