I love it when someone comes out with something that sounds fresh, fun, new – and has been around for a while. I think it speaks to the timeliness of music.
“Looking Back To See” is one of those songs. Originally written by Jim Ed and Maxine Brown, Justin Tubb – the son of “The Texas Troubadour” enjoyed a hit with the song in 1954 with Goldie Hill. That also didn’t stop the brother and sister duo (before Bonnie joined the family act The Browns in 1955) from taking it to the Top 10 the same year. The song remained in the live shows of both artists for years, and was also carried back to the Top 20 in 1972 by Buck Owens and Susan Raye.
That’s where I introduce you to Kim McAbee. I had the chance to meet her in the early 2000s when she was performing as a member of The Buckaroos during the weekend shows at The Crystal Palace in Bakersfield.
She’s recorded a few projects over the years, and even one with the head “Buckaroo” himself. But, I don’t know if I have ever heard her simply enjoying the art of being in the studio any more as she sounds on this duet with Ty Herndon.
McAbee and Herndon sound like they are having a ball on the track. It’s traditional…but by 2016 standards, and not 1954 standards. It’s an enjoyable three minutes from start to finish.
Whether the two had Justin and Goldie, The Browns, or Kim McAbee’s longtime mentor on their mind when they were recording this song…it works…and works well. Give it a listen and see if you don’t agree!
Enjoy this live version of Kim McAbee and Ty Herndon performing “Looking Back To See” at the Bakersfield Music Hall of Fame from earlier this year.