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Behind Closed Doors by Charlie Rich (2001 American Milestones Remaster)

Grade: A

The latest installments in Sony Music’s ongoing “American Milestones” series—offering lovingly remastered classic albums, all studded with rare bonus tracks—spotlight some of country’s more eclectic, underappreciated and sometimes rebellious artists.

Charlie Rich never fit in Nashville, either, but he became a megastar anyway.

Producer Billy Sherrill’s countrypolitan strings meshed gorgeously with Charlie’s soulful vocals and rough-hewn style to create his breakthrough album, 1973’s Behind Closed Doors.

His contrarian ways - emblemized by setting ablaze the card proclaiming “outsider” John Denver as 1975’s CMA Entertainer of the Year - would eventually make Charlie Rich an outcast himself in Music City.

However, Behind Closed Doors now towers over the work of many who once ostracized him.

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