Lyle Lovett ‘Lyle Lovett’

Today’s Cool album of the Day (# 928 in the Series) is the self-titled debut from Lyle Lovett

Lyle Lovett burst into national prominence with his Pontiac album in 1987. That was the release that gave us some of his best known tunes such as “If I Had a Boat” and “She’s No Lady.”  Some people never looked to see that he had another spectacular record the year prior. I’m referring to his debut, which was simply called Lyle Lovett.

I’ve always been a fan of debut albums.  To me it seems that the one thing that many of them have it common is that they are rarely overproduced.  Why, because most of these new acts don’t have the budget to do things a million times over and over, which often cause them to be lifeless.

I think that’s very true for the Lyle Lovett album.  It’s quite a simple record. I’d say it’s more traditional sounding than some of Lyle’s later works.  It’s not straight country, however, it still has some of the sound you’d expect from him. There’s a little swing here, a little folk there not to mention some blues and gospel.

Some of the highlights are “Cowboy Man,”” Farther Down the Line” and a song that is still often part of Lyle’s shows, “Closing Time.”

Lyle and producer Tony Brown (ex-EmmyLou’s Hot Band) were able to round up some nice talent for the project. Rosanne Cash added background vocals as did Vince Gill.   Mac McAnally, guitarist for Jimmy Buffett’s Coral Reefer Band also is on the record.

Track listing

All songs by Lyle Lovett, except “This Old Porch” by Lyle Lovett and Robert Earl Keen.

Side One

  1. “Cowboy Man” – 2:48
  2. “God Will” – 2:13
  3. “Farther Down the Line” – 3:05
  4. “This Old Porch” – 4:16
  5. “Why I Don’t Know” – 2:41

Side Two

  1. “If I Were the Man You Wanted” – 3:57
  2. “You Can’t Resist It” – 3:08
  3. “The Waltzing Fool” – 3:49
  4. “An Acceptable Level of Ecstasy (The Wedding Song)” – 3:30
  5. “Closing Time” – 3:43


  • Mathew McKenzie – bass
  • Jeff Borree – drums
  • Matt Rollings – acoustic and electric piano
  • Mark Prentice – organ
  • Lyle Lovett – acoustic guitar
  • Ray Herndon – electric rhythm guitar & background vocals
  • Billy Williams – electric lead guitar
  • Tom Mortensen – steel guitar
  • Glen Duncan – fiddle
  • Steve Marsh – saxophones
  • James Gilmer – congas
  • J. David Sloan – background vocals
  • Bass on “Farther Down the Line” – Emory Gordy, Jr.
  • Drums on “Farther Down the Line”, “This Old Porch”, & “An Acceptable Level of Ecstasy” – Bob Warren
  • Piano on “God Will” & “Farther Down the Line” – Mark Prentice
  • Synthesizer on “You Can’t Resist It” – John Jarvis
  • Acoustic lead guitar on “God Will”, “Farther Down the Line” & “If I Were the Man You Wanted” – Mac McAnally
  • Electric rhythm guitar on “You Can’t Resist It” – Vince Gill & Jon Goin
  • Electric lead guitar on “Farther Down the Line” and “Why I Don’t Know” – Ray Herndon
  • Electric lead guitar on “You Can’t Resist It” – Jon Goin
  • Background vocals on “You Can’t Resist It” – Rosanne Cash & Lyle Lovett
  • Background vocals on “An Acceptable Level of Ecstasy – Francine Reed
  • Saxophones arranged by Billy Williams


Here’s the album in its entirety

Austin City Limits recently closed out their old studio after years and years. They closed it with Lyle singing “Closing Time” but not inviting all the staff on stage to help him carry it out!

Posted by Larry Carta

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