Official Website of Nashville Recording Artist: David Ball

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Lyle Lovett records David Ball: The Tennessean 9/04/09

Posted by Admin on November 24, 2011 at 5:55 PM

Having scored with major singles such as “Thinkin’ Problem” and “Riding With Private Malone,” David Ball is best known as a country hit-maker. But before his country success, he was part of heralded (but not heralded enough) trio Uncle Walt’s Band, a group that also included Walter Hyatt and Champ Hood. That acoustic band (Ball played upright bass and sang leads and high harmonies) began in Spartanburg, S.C., where all three members grew up. And one of Uncle Walt’s signature songs was “Don’t You Think I Feel It Too,” a plaintive rumination that Lyle Lovett just recorded (it’ll be on Lovett’s Natural Forces album, set for an Oct. 20 release on Lost Highway Records).

“I wrote that song in the early 1970s, when I was finishing up high school,” Ball said. “It wasn’t something I labored over. It was something that just came out.”

The song is now nearly 40 years old -- older than Taylor Swift and Carrie Underwood combined -- but it seems to get covered with regularity. Jessi Colter, Shawn Colvin and Eric Weinberg have all done versions, and Ball heard about Lovett’s recording while riding on a shuttle bus to get his car at the Nashville airport.

“My cell phone rang, and it was Lyle, and we went through this conversation where he read the lyrics to me to make sure he had it all correct,” Ball said. “This is a song he heard when he was just a kid in Texas. I hung up at the end of the call, and some guy next to me goes, ‘So, you’ve got a Lyle Lovett cut!’”

The Lovett album also includes “Loretta,” a song penned by the late, great Townes Van Zandt.

Ball’s next local gig with his Pioneer Playboys band is Sept. 18 at Puckett’s Grocery in Franklin. Check for details.


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