Dear 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.”
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