Lee Hazlewood: the wayward guru of cowboy psychedelia | Music | The Guardian
Nancy Sinatra and Friends - Frank Sinatra, Lee Hazlewood & Dean Martin . Sinatra fan for a very long time but I only knew Lee Hazelwood from a couple of. Sydney and Melbourne stage parallel shows of dark and sometimes sentimental music. Nancy Sinatra, 75, says Morrissey is her. Nancy's earlier career success was partly guided by Lee Hazlewood, and her famous father, late singing legend.
He offered Texas-born radio DJ Tom Thacker the job of vice-president after a game of football at a friend's house. He was an unorthodox boss. His private office had blackout blinds and he liked to turn up for work around midday. One morning he came in early and found Thacker already at his desk.
Horrified, Hazlewood ordered him to take the rest of the day off. And I'd never seen anyone with a moustache like that.
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He was very Texan. He was very sweet and embracing of us: LHI signed artists at such a rate that even the staff couldn't keep track. They're gonna make you invisible too!
Hazlewood's approach was to record singles as quickly and cheaply as possible and hope some of them took off. It was challenging, especially when you're the only girl who's doing that. Mark Pickerel It was a well-oiled machine but it wasn't producing the goods. The only signing who went on to bigger things was country-rock pioneer Gram Parsonswho left the International Submarine Band after their Hokom-produced album to join the Byrds.
Hazlewood, who never liked Parsons, was so enraged that he sued to have the singer's vocals removed from the Byrds' Sweetheart of the Rodeo. He was just as controlling when Hokom received an offer to meet the Beatles he hated them, too in New York to discuss producing artists on their new Apple label.
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No," says Honey Ltd's Joan Glasser. He was a survivor. He rolled with everything. They made you feel like a human being. They became lifelong friends. I miss him a lot. Hokom had finally had enough and walked. By that point Hazlewood had tax problems, his teenage son was almost old enough for the Vietnam draft, and LHI was dying anyway, so Sweden looked like the perfect escape route.
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He spent the rest of the decade there, making increasingly strange records and films with Axelman. Was Thacker surprised by the move? He was a very spontaneous human being. Instead of maintaining his friendships he kind of abandoned them. He could detach himself from things that weren't going his way.
He really needed a new start. Mark Pickerel There was one last piece of unfinished business, emotional rather than financial. InHazlewood recorded his finest work, a mordant breakup album called Requiem for an Almost Lady. When I met him he laughed off the idea that it was all about Hokom: In a way it was hurtful and in a way it was poignant. I had moved on and he was still carrying a torch. Whenever he'd be in town I'd find little love notes slipped under my doormat. Reluctantly, he met up with her at the Sinatras' mansion.
An hour later, he came over and said, 'Lee, I'm glad to hear that you guys are going to be working together,' and left. We lowered her singing about two keys.
I made her sound like a tough little broad. I wanted her to sing like a year-old girl who screwed truck drivers. With just their second single together, she had one of the biggest hits of the s, These Boots Are Made For Walking, a song Hazlewood had intended for a male vocalist until Nancy overheard him working on it and demanded that she sing it.
When Reprise talked of pairing her up for some duets, she was equally strong-willed in insisting that her only partner could be Lee. Hazlewood had accidentally made his vocal debut with 's Trouble Is A Lonesome Town album, a gruffly narrated song cycle that he'd recorded as a demo, but which was released under his own name. The kitschy combination of the "tough little broad" and his own bassy, world-weary, thirtysomething persona proved every bit as irresistible as Boots, the sound fusing the musical tastes of Hazlewood's parents: The songs' thinly veiled drug references and insinuations that theirs was more than a singing partnership were, Hazlewood maintains, part of the fiction.
We made hit records, and she went home and I went home. She'd say, 'Barton writes 'em, I sing 'em. I don't know what I'm singing about, nor do I want to know! Hazlewood moved to Sweden and slowly retired from music.
In the Nineties, cult interest in his solo work lured him back. I said, 'We'll just do it like we did in the old days. Then eventually we submitted some things we both liked.