Phil Ochs – I Ain’t Marching Anymore


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Track Listing:
1. I Ain't Marching Anymore - 2:35   2. In the Heat of the Summer - 3:06   3. Draft Dodger Rag - 2:11   4. That's What I Want to Hear - 3:10   5. That Was the President - 3:24   6. Iron Lady - 3:34   7. The Highwayman - 5:39   8. Links on the Chain - 4:21   9. Hills of West Virginia - 3:22   10. The Men Behind the Guns - 3:04   11. Talking Birmingham Ham - 3:12   12. Ballad of the Carpenter - 3:55   13. Days of Decision - 3:12   14. Here's to the State of Mississippi - 5:51

1. AllMusic - Mark Deming
What a difference a year made for Phil Ochs -- his 1964 debut, All the News That's Fit to Sing, gained him a reputation as the most promising songwriter to come out of the Greenwich Village folk scene since Bob Dylan, and 1965's I Ain't Marching Anymore proved he was every bit as good as his press clippings said. Ochs had grown by leaps and bounds as a performer in the space between the two albums, and where Phil sometimes sounded a bit clumsy and uncertain on his first LP, here he brims with confidence, and his guitar work -- simple but forceful and efficient -- didn't require another musician's sweetening as it did on All the News. Most importantly, while Ochs' songwriting was uneven but compelling in his first collection, I Ain't Marching Anymore finds him in consistently strong form throughout. The craft and the emotional weight of the material makes even the most dated material ("Draft Dodger Rag" and "Here's to the State of Mississippi") effective today, and a surprising number of the songs remain as potent (and sadly timely) today as in 1965, especially "Iron Maiden" and "That's What I Want to Hear." And if there are fewer jokes on this set, "Draft Dodger Rag" is funnier than anything on Phil's first album, and his cover of Ewan MacColl's "Ballad of the Carpenter" (as well as his adaptation of Alfred Noyes' "The Highwayman") revealed what a strong interpretive performer he could be. (His liner notes are pretty good, too; it's a shame he didn't write more prose.) Literally dozens of singer/songwriters jumped on the protest bandwagon after the success of Bob Dylan and Joan Baez, but one would be hard-pressed to name one who made an album that works as well almost four decades later as I Ain't Marching Anymore.

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