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Chet Atkins

Chet Atkins Picks On the Beatles – 1996 (RCA)

Reviewed by Norm Rosenfield

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CDs by Chet Atkins

Out of the RCA vault comes this reissue from 1966, 12 songs clocking in atabout 30 minutes, but with Atkins you've got quality, not quantity.

That's because without vocals, hype or attitude getting in the way, the listener cansoak in a harvest of sun ripened guitar riffs that haven't lost any potentcy in 30 years.

True, Atkins is even more amazing now than back then, but hearing "And I Love Her" and "Things We Said Today" as only he can perform them is a timeless pleasure, complemented by Charlie McCoy on harmonica.

A certain youthful naievete permeates the CD, there's nothing self important about these proceedings. Lots of artistry and fun are featured on "She's A Woman," where the country feel from the original lends itself to Atkins' picking style, as does "I'll Cry Instead."

You don't have to be a guitar fan to enjoy Atkins' arrangements that add unexpected harmonies with generous helpings of class. So when Chet picks on the Beatles its only the highest form of flattery.