Liner Note Author: Roger Dopson.
In 1968, Jeannie C. Riley became one of the biggest stars in country music almost overnight when her recording of Tom T. Hall's "Harper Valley P.T.A." became a massive hit on both the C&W and pop charts, topping both at a time when there was precious little crossover between the formats. While Riley would never enjoy another success as great as "Harper Valley P.T.A.," she fared well on the country charts over the next few years, and her records were fine stuff, with Riley's voice well suited to the tough, sassy attack of "The Cotton Patch," "Harper Valley P.T.A.," and "The Widow Jones," as well as darker, more thoughtful material like "No Brass Band," "Shed Me No Tears," and the proto-feminist "The Rib." Harper Valley P.T.A.: The Plantation Recordings 1968-70 collects 58 tunes Riley recorded for Shelby Singleton's Plantation label during her first burst of fame, comprising her first five albums in full -- Harper Valley P.T.A., Yearbooks and Yesterdays, Things Go Better with Love, Country Girl, and The Generation Gap. While there have been a number of collections of Riley's hits, Harper Valley P.T.A.: The Plantation Recordings is the most thorough collection to date of Riley's most fruitful period, and restores a number of rare sides to her catalog. ~ Mark Deming