Conway Twitty
Timeless

1. (Lost Her Love) On Our Last Date 3:27
(Conway Twitty / Floyd Cramer)
Sony/ATV Acuff Rose Music

2. Dim Lights, Thick Smoke (And Loud,
Loud Music) 2:43
(Joe Maphis / Rose Lee Maphis / Max Fidler)
Copyright Control

3. Hello Darlin’ 2:32
(Conway Twitty) Sony/ATV Tree Publishing

4. How Much More Can She Stand 2:10
(Harry Compton) Brothers Two Music

5. Working Girl 2:35
(Wes Buchanan) Madelon Music

6. I Can’t See Me Without You 2:49
(Conway Twitty) Sony/ATV Tree Publishing

7. I Love You More Today 2:43
(LE White) Stringberg Music Co.

8. Crazy Arms 2:48
(Ralph Mooney / Charles Seals)
Songs of Universal, Inc.

9. 15 Years Ago 3:21
(Raymond Smith)
Copyright Control/
R Gant Music Group Inc. DBA Hello Darlin & Music Pavillion

10. Honky-Tonk Man 1:46
(Johnny Horton / Tillman Franks / Howard Hausey) Universal Music Publishing OBO Cedarwood Publ.

11. The Image of Me 2:59
(Wayne Kemp / Curtis Wayne)
Sony/ATV Tree Publishing

12. If You Were Mine To Lose 2:15
(Conway Twitty) Sony/ATV Tree Publishing

13. Proud Mary 2:21
(John Fogerty) Jondora Music

14. Next in Line 3:00
(Wayne Kemp / Curtis Wayne)
Sony/ATV Tree Publishing

Executive Producer - Thomas Gramuglia
Original Master Tape Transfers: John Jungklaus
Liner Notes: Preshias Harris
Graphic Design: Jeff Taylor at Nashville CD Design

Updated recordings:
Produced by – Joni Twitty Ryles and John Wesley Ryles
Engineer – Mark Capps
Recorded at: Skaggs Place
Background Vocals – John Wesley Ryles
Piano and electric piano – Ron Oates
Acoustic guitar – Kevin Williams
Acoustic guitar – Tony Durante on "15 Years Ago" & "Crazy Arms"
Original recording studio – at Scotty Moore's Music City Recorders Nashville
Engineer – Scotty Moore

Original recording musicians:
Joe E Lewis – bass and background vocals
Tommy "Pork Chop" Markham – drums
John Hughey – steel guitar
Hargus "Pig" Robbins – Piano
Guitar player – Conway Twitty

Special thanks from Joni Twitty Ryles:

Preshias Harris for making the connection for this project to happen. Thank you for the beautiful liner notes and for all your hard work and devotion to this project.

Kat Atwood for her assistance and dedication to this project

John Jungklaus for keeping these masters in pristine condition all these years

Snuffy Miller for seeing the vision and for being a wonderful friend to our family

Thomas Gramuglia with Country Rewind for bringing this rare treasure to us and then having the faith to allow us to do the update. He has become a very dear friend who believes in this project as much as we do. He is so respectful of our family and has done everything to make sure we are totally proud and happy with this album. He is a class act!

And to our father, Conway Twitty, for leaving us a true gift. His talent is immeasurable and his music has captured the hearts of millions and will continue to be discovered by new generations to come because he is Timeless! He gave us enough love to last
the rest of our lives. We are so proud of all he accomplished but we are even more proud of the man he was.

Conway Twitty United, LP for use of Conway Twitty’s music, name and image. Please visit conwaytwitty.com for merchandise and information about upcoming events.

Facebook pages: Conway Twitty & Conway Twitty Connection

Twitter: @ConwayTwitty

 

You have in your hands a piece of history. The tracks on this album, featuring the unmistakable voice of Conway Twitty, were long forgotten and the few people who knew of their existence assumed they had long since been lost or destroyed. They have never before been made commercially available to the public.

In the 1960s and 70s, the United States Armed Forces commissioned a series of 15-minute programs, each of which featured a popular country artist. These shows were recorded by Scotty Moore (best known as Elvis Presley’s original guitar player) at his Music City Recorders studio, located at 821 19th Avenue South in Nashville. The shows were distributed to around 2,000 radio stations as a recruitment tool. The stations would air the shows and then simply discard them.

On May 24, 1972, Conway Twitty walked into the studio and, after a brief rehearsal and sound level check, the tape rolled and he recorded the songs you can hear on this album. Twitty’s daughter, Joni Twitty, notes that her father used his own band, The Twitty Birds, on these recordings, rather than studio musicians. ‘Big Joe’ Lewis, played bass and sang harmony, Tommy ‘Pork Chop’ Markham played drums and John ‘Buttermilk’ Hughey played steel guitar.

“John and Dad were childhood friends,” recalls Joni. “They formed their first band together and had a radio show when they were 12 years old. Together, the Twitty Birds played and Dad sang these songs in one take and they had no way of knowing then, that 44 years later these recordings would stand the test of time and become a shining testament to their great talents.”

She says that the family was taken back in time hearing the recordings that were thought to be lost forever. “It feels so good to hear them all together again,” she says. “And, this is just how they sounded in concert. These songs were recorded one time through. There were no overdubs and no tuners. We think it turned out great!”

Conway Twitty United; which consists, of Joni, along with her siblings Jimmy, Michael and Kathy gave their approval to Country Rewind Records’ President Tom Gramuglia to proceed with the project.
“If it was something Dad wouldn’t be proud to release, we would not be interested,” Joni emphasized. “When we heard these songs we were so excited because Dad’s vocals were phenomenal. Yes, Dad’s fans will love this and he would be proud for us to release it!”

She recalls that Gramuglia said that their plan was to hire a producer to update the 14 songs by adding to the existing tracks so the recordings would have a more modern feel. “I explained to him that I had spent countless hours in the studio with Dad when he was recording and that in 1975, I had the honor to sing on a duet with him, “Don’t Cry Joni” which became a huge record. I also sang background vocals on another hit song of his, “Did You Know Your Love Had Taken Me That High.”

I also told Tom that my husband, John Wesley Ryles, was a former solo recording artist and now one of the top background vocalists in Nashville. John has more than 50 years of experience in the
studio and with his wealth of know-how and my knowledge of Conway Twitty’s music, we could produce this album. I said to Tom that we would treat this project with the love and respect it deserved. Tom was totally onboard. Thankfully, he put his trust in us.”

Joni and John called in recording engineer Mark Capps who has been involved in the production of countless number one records. “Mark even worked on Dad’s last album, Final Touches, which was
completed three weeks prior to his passing,” said Joni. “Another great connection I have with Mark is that his Dad, Jimmy Capps, played rhythm guitar on many of Dad’s albums.”

They then contacted Ron Oates whom they consider to be one of the best piano players in Nashville and is known for writing great arrangements for people like Gladys Knight, Engelbert Humperdinck,
and many others. They also brought in Tony Durante (husband of Joni’s sister Kathy) who added acoustic guitar to two of the tracks, ‘Crazy Arms’ and ’15 Years Ago.’ Rounding out the team is acoustic guitarist Kevin Williams who has toured with the Gaither Music Group for 20+ years and is an in-demand session musician.

With the team intact, they were off to the studio to add some sparkle to an already great album. “My husband, John Wesley Ryles, stepped up to the microphone and just as I knew he could, he added
the perfect harmony to each song,” says Joni. “Lord, it put a lump in my throat to hear him, Dad and Big Joe singing together. It was like magic!” With the musicians added, a rich enhancement began to take place great album was born.

The titles of many of these songs will be familiar to Conway Twitty fans. However, the recordings on this album reveal Twitty in a more laid-back, semi-live environment made for a radio audience,
rather than the more precise atmosphere of the sessions that produced the commercial hits.

Working on this album brought back a flood of memories for Joni: “In 1960, Dad wrote a song and carried it in his guitar case for many years. In 1969, he was in the studio working on his next album. At the end of the session, they had some extra time and he decided to record this song he had written many years earlier. He stepped up to the microphone and the next two words out of his mouth would catapult his already successful career as a Country Music star into a whole new level as a Country Music Superstar. Those words were… ‘Hello Darlin’. To everyone in the studio, it was obvious what his next single would be. “Hello Darlin’” was an instant hit playing all over the world and would become Dad’s signature song throughout his career.”

Every song in this collection sparks a memory for Joni about her father. About ‘The Image of Me,’ she notes that it was his first Top Ten record on the Country charts, after having a very successful rock n’ roll career, selling over 16 million albums, he was now on cloud nine singing the music he loved most,” she said. “In the beginning, some of the country radio DJs questioned his sincerity about recording country music. But Dad had a gift for delivering a country song with so much heart and ‘The Image of Me’ was the first song where the DJs let him know he was now accepted into their coveted country world.” ‘Next in Line’ was a game changer for Twitty’s career in Country music. “It was his first numberone record which was the beginning of an unprecedented string of 55 number one hits,” Joni recalled. “No one in any genre of music had ever accomplished that before. He held the record for many years until George Strait broke his record a few years ago.”

As for the Credence Clearwater hit, ‘Proud Mary,’ Joni, Kathy, Michael and Jimmy all loved the song as kids: “We were so excited to find out that Dad recorded it in 1969. He did a great country rendition of a song we already loved and made country music even more cool,” she remembers. “It is amazing that this project was recorded 44 years ago and was never intended to be
released as an album,” says Joni. “It’s a miracle that the tape survived but thanks to Tom Gramuglia and his team, it was in pristine condition. It sounds as if it was recorded recently. And, with the magic of new recording techniques, we were able to add to this already wonderful display of talent to make it shine
even brighter.”

Twitty’s music continues to influence today’s country artists. Joni sums it up this way: “It is so gratifying that current country music superstars like Blake Shelton, Kenny Chesney, Luke Bryan, Tim McGraw, and many more, pay homage to Dad by saying he had a huge impact on their development as country singers by listening to his music growing up. So, with these current artists introducing the new generation of country music fans to his music and with Dad having an unprecedented 55 number one records, countless awards, sold out shows night after night, and five decades of great music, it would be hard to deny that Conway Twitty is TIMELESS!”

Every track on this collection will bring back memories for Conway Twitty’s legions of loyal fans. A true ‘labor of love,’ this album brings these lost tracks to robust life in the 21st century.

-- Preshias Harris

©2016 Country Rewind Records, All Rights Reserved