Charlie Louvin :: Spaceland, L.A., CA – Saturday

satan_is_real.jpgDear Los Angeles, heads up, Charlie Louvin – living legend that he is – will be at Spaceland this Saturday night. The Louvin Brothers’ album Satan Is Real is without a doubt the Rosetta stone of fire and brimstone country gospel. Released in 1960, wrapped up in quite possibly the greatest iconic album cover of all time, the LP pulled no punches.

Brothers Ira and Charlie Louvin conceived and concocted an original LP preaching Pentecostal warnings of the desires of the flesh, sin and of course, Satan. The brothers angelic harmonization adds a depth and reverence for the material further highlighting the fact that these two men believed every word they were singing/preaching. There is no middle ground here — you are either in the flock or destined to an eternity of damnation.Listen to the spoken word section of the album’s opening track “Satan Is Real.” The album’s liner notes reveal that brother Ira Louvin always felt guilty for ignoring his calling to the ministry and this piece was the next best thing preaching “it’s sweet to know that God is real…but Satan is real too.”

Many of us got turned onto this record while exploring The Byrds 1968 album, featuring Gram Parsons, Sweetheart of The Rodeo. Below is an aternate version of the Byrds take on the Louvin’s “The Christian Life.”

MP3: The Louvin Brothers :: Satan Is Real
MP3: The Louvin Brothers :: The Christian Life

MP3: The Byrds :: The Christian Life (alternate take)
Amazon: The Louvin Brothers – Satan Is Real

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8 thoughts on “Charlie Louvin :: Spaceland, L.A., CA – Saturday

  1. You totally got me on the Byrds avenue. When a friend told me some of the Sweetheart songs were originally by thee Louvin Brothers, I had just assumed that they were contemporaries of the Carter Family. To think that the original and the cover are only eight years apart is like someone covering “Kid A” totally tongue-in-cheek this year. Who knew that Parsons, McGuinn et al were ahead of their time in this respect as well? Anyway, thanks for the original. Much prettier (and from the heart), to be sure.

  2. I once saw Charlie Louvin play with Cake in Nashville. People crowd-surfed while he sang, which I thought was inappropriate at the time but maybe now I’m okay with. You ever hear Louvin’s self-titled record from a couple years back? On fire.

  3. i would go to this show, but i saw nofx at the fonda last night and it kicked my ass. thanks for the tunes!

  4. I’ll have the raise my hand on the Byrds connection as well. “Sweetheart” was not only a great album, it turned me on to a lot of other great tunes in the same vein.

  5. Cool. I discovered this album by chance after liking the cover and been a fan since.
    As well as The Bryds’ version, I saw The Raconteurs perform a version of ‘Christian Life’ at The Leeds Festival a couple of years ago and a rousing rendition it was too.

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