I Won't Cry

I Won't Cry

Another gospel boy gone blues-bad, Johnny Adams delivered the secular goods from the get-go. The title track, penned by Tutti Frutti lyricist Dorothy Labostrie, established the Louisiana balladeer as a regional sensation. "A Losing Battle," written, produced, and piano-styled by the then-unknown Mac Rebennack (Dr. John), went even further. Though none of his subsequent Ric releases did nearly as well, stellar performances such as "You Can Make It If You Try" and "Life Is a Struggle" indicate that this was due more to Ric's inability--or unwillingness--to move out of his regional mindset. Backed by Edgar Blanchard and his Gondoliers, this collection is the classic beginning to a long and distinguished career. <i>--Ben Edmonds</i>