Eggs Over Easy “Good ‘N’ Cheap”

Here’s another one for the wish-this-wasn’t-it list. Eggs Over Easy were virtually unknown but recorded an incredibly solid album and have a cool story to boot.

Credited with launching the genre of pub rock, these hard working American road warriors brought the sound of Americana/country rock to the pubs in England during an ill-fated recording trip, and ended up gigging around until their visas ran up, inspiring the likes of Brinsley Schwarz, Bees Make Honey, and Frankie Miller. They had amassed an impressive repertoire of original and cover material upon their return to the states, and recorded Good ‘N’ Cheap out in Tuscon, AZ with Link Wray producing. Sadly, it’s about all they recorded.

You can tell the Eggs were seasoned performers the instant their record hits. These fun, good-natured country tunes have a smooth, Steely Dan vibe, sounding at times squeaky clean, loose & tight, honest and raw. All but one are originals, with writing and singing duties equally distributed between members Austin Delone, Jack O’Hara, and Brien Hopkins. The songs are surprisingly versatile: “Party, Party” is a pure sweet ’70s treat,  just what the title says, “Arkansas” is a gorgeous, foot-tapping roots ballad, “Runnin’ Down to Memphis” is straight country, and a couple harder blues numbers round things out (though “The Factory” is my one skippable track and I’m not too big on “Night Flight” despite its Bowie-tinged flavor). I originally thought the record was a little top-heavy, considering how the first three tracks seem to climax during the anthemic chorus to “Henry Morgan,” but Good ‘N’ Cheap is loaded with gems. These are pretty advanced compositions for a bar band, “Home To You” and the nearly epic “Pistol On A Shelf” are unmissable tracks. Same with “Face Down In The Meadow” and “Don’t Let Nobody,” which feel like instant classics.

It’s the kind of record where you savor the bonus cuts. “111 Avenue C” gives us a taste of the live Eggs act, featuring some intense scatting at the back of this swinging blues number. Also included is the infamous “Bar In My Car” (“put a bar in the back of my car and drive my self to drink”) and is actually one of the band’s catchiest moments.

There is reportedly a 2nd album out there, recorded in 1982 called Fear of Frying. I have yet to track it down but based on this debut, it’s a joke it hasn’t been properly reissued. In any case, Good ‘N’ Cheap is no doubt essential to any fan of Americana and pub rock. Sincere, sweet, feel-good music.

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“Arkansas”

:) Original Vinyl | 1972 | A&M | search ebay ]


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13 Comments.

  • Nik

    afraid the tracks ain’t working brothers. which, along with the day and the funky band & album names, almost made me think this was some kind of invented band, aka april fools joke! cool to find something put together down here in tucson though, especially if it’s through link wray

    p.s. the doug sahm book is a great read! thanks again y’all

  • Brendan

    joke’s over. fixed the links! thanks nik.

  • Len Liechti

    I’ve just found Fear Of Frying as a CD offered on eBay by someone in Japan. The catalogue number is FOCD-2117, dunno what the label is. Also mysterious that Good’n’Cheap itself is currently out of print – used copies on Amazon are being offered at extortionate rates. Hopefully it’ll be reissued sometime soon.

  • sam

    henry morgan reminds me distinctly of ben folds five haha

  • Great find here guys. Looking forward to tracking down a copy for myself. Thanks as always.

  • Poz

    Forty years on and immortal! Kentish Town will never be the same.

  • MIKE HALPERN

    Stay away from the japanese CD. It’s a bootleg and the band are receiving nothing for it. They are in discussions again with Hux Records to do a proper re-issue

  • Len Liechti

    Good advice, Mike. These days it’s hard to know what’s legit and what isn’t in the world of rare reissues, but if something’s that hard to find and the label isn’t clearly stated then it’s almost certainly a bogie. The artists deserve to reap the results of their efforts – anything else is intellectual property theft. Hopefully both Eggs albums will reappear shortly on a legit, royalty-paying label.

  • Len Liechti

    Just been fortunate enough to score a legit pre-loved copy of the Hux reissue of Nice’n’Greasy at a sensible price. Enjoyable stuff, sort of by the Long Ryders out of Poco, to use a horseracing metaphor. Love the barrelhouse piano, and especially good when they get the Telecasters burning. No doubt where Brinsley Schwarz got the pattern from – someone ought to sue.

  • Len Liechti

    Nice ‘n’ Greasy? Where did I get that from? Obviously I meant Good ‘n’ Cheap. Nice ‘n’ Greasy is the David Lindley record . . .

  • Anybody know if the original 1971, Chas Chandler produced, Olympic Studios recordings are available to hear?
    By the way, it’s worth mentioning that Eggs Over Easy (original Eggs minus Brien Hopkins) are playing Dingwalls in London on Sunday, November 13th 2011

  • josél

    Anyone know what year and where the band was formed EGGS OVER EASY, and who were its members and played an instrument?
    Very good …¡¡¡

  • dave

    Anybody know where i can find any of their albums for sale? I’ve been looking for months and nothing!

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