Alan Autry And Randall Franks Join Voices For Mississippi Moon CD

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Alan Autry and Randall Franks, best known as “Bubba Skinner” and “Officer Randy Goode” from the Mississippi set NBC and CBS series “In the Heat of the Night” (1988-1994), join voices for the Americana CD “Mississippi Moon - Country Traditions.” 

“The stories told in traditional country songs are often like those we share while acting on the screen,” Mr. Franks said. “This collection combines old-style country, Southern gospel and bluegrass musical sounds on classic country and new songs. Some are upbeat and some are mournful with stories that folks will remember.  There are uplifting messages that will hopefully make you want to smile.”

Within the collection, Mr. Autry and Mr. Franks, each share songs vocally while Mr. Franks contributes musically and as producer throughout the project. Autry-Franks Productions created the project released by Crimson Records. 

“I’m just an actor who loves the sounds of classic country music and I am honored to share my limited vocal talents,” Mr. Autry said. “Singers such as Johnny Cash, Lefty Frizzell, David Houston and George Jones were the backdrops of my experiences.

“With the support of some talented musicians, I included a different musical look at Johnny’s ‘I Walk the Line’ and Lefty’s ‘Long Black Veil’ as well as three new songs.” 

One among the three new songs is Mr. Autry’s original song “He’s the Only Way,” a gospel song written with Mr. Franks which tells the story of a father who is losing himself to alcohol after the death of a child but through an inspiring revelation turns his life around.

“It is hard to say what inspires a person to write a song,” Mr. Autry said. “It is like writing a mini-script; you want to tell a story that will hopefully inspire someone through its telling.”

According to Mr. Franks, it was a movie script that inspired him to take Mr. Autry’s idea and pen the mandolin-infused “Mean Joe Blake” reminiscent of the story songs of the 1960s such as Jimmy Dean’s “Big Bad John” and Walter Brennan’s “Old Rivers.”

“This is probably one of my favorites on the CD because thanks to the wonderful advances in technology, I was able to combine some archival tracks of two of my Grand Ole Opry heroes - Jim and Jesse McReynolds to enhance the performance I share,” Mr. Franks said. “I am thankful to Jesse and Jim for all the encouragement they shared with me.” 

The first radio single released from the CD is the Southern gospel performance of “You Gotta Know the Lows” by Mr. Franks complete with mixed group vocal harmonies electrifying the arrangement.

The title cut “Mississippi Moon” also features Mr. Franks ably enhanced by composer Jesse McReynolds providing musical support. It was released as a single to bluegrass programmers.

Mr. Franks other contributions are new songs “Georgia Rain,” and “I’m Straightening Up My Life.” On the latter, he combines harmonies with his co-writer - three-time Dove nominee Mark Wheeler of the Marksmen Quartet.

“Both songs bring stories that encourage one to consider where they need to be living life - hopefully with God as a big part of it,” Mr. Franks said.

Mr. Wheeler actually co-authored two other songs on the CD with Mr. Franks – “If I Could Paint a Picture” performed by Mr. Autry and “I Almost Had a Hit,” an upbeat novelty duet featuring Mr. Franks and Mr. Autry singing about some things that “almost” happened.

Mr. Franks also reaches back to 1959 to give another spin to Patsy Cline’s “Gotta A Lot of Rhythm in My Soul.”

Mr. Autry is currently recurring on the WB series “Hart of Dixie” while working on his latest original Christian movie. His most recent  film is "Forgiven."

Mr. Franks, who stars with John Schneider in his latest film “Lukewarm,” is touring musically, writing his weekly newspaper column and completing a new book. He is an inductee of the Independent Country Music Hall of Fame and an International Bluegrass Music Museum Legend.

“In the Heat of the Night” airs nationwide daily on WGN-TV. 

Mississippi Moon - Country Traditions is available in Ringgold at Caffeine Addicts, Cottage Treasures and Uniktings! and in Fort Oglethorpe at Tootie's Treasures or for download on Itunes and Amazon.com. Fans may like the CD on Facebook.

For more information, visit http://randallfranks.com/ or www.autryentertainmentgroup.com.

Ignite Concert Is Saturday Night

Led by lead vocalists and winner of Road to Nightfall, Brittany Ammons and Darren Self (of Function with a C), Chattanooga Metropolitan is having its Ignite concert on Saturday at 7:30 p.m. It will be held on the North Shore at 817 North Market Street, just one block from the new Publix. This concert is for the community. Chattanooga Metropolitan is combating the recent spree ... (click for more)

Chattanooga’s Live Music Scene – Front Row For Second Straight Week!

For the second week in a row, I was able to get the front row seat for the music at the Chattanooga Market. In the world of baseball, that would mean I am batting a thousand. One more time and I’ll have the hockey equivalent of the hat trick.  This past week I went to see one of my all-time favorites- Sweet Georgia Sound. In their 20 th year, this big band gets better ... (click for more)

Harr Outlines $40 Million Plan For Chattanooga Light Rail System

Outgoing Chamber of Commerce President Ron Harr on Monday outlined a $40 million plan for a Chattanooga light rail system that would serve not only downtown, but also the Airport and the Enterprise South Industrial Park. In a speech to the Chattanooga Engineers Club, Mr. Harr said most cities looking at such an ambitious plan "would be facing costs of over a billion dollars." ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Choo Choo Adding Clubs, Restaurants In $8 Million Renovation

The historic Chattanooga Choo Choo is adding clubs and restaurants in a $7 million renovation, it was announced in front of the South Market Street landmark on Monday morning. The Comedy Catch will be moving from its longtime home in Brainerd and there will be a new 500-person music venue that will be in addition to Track 29. The new venue, managed by Track 29, will feature a ... (click for more)

Senator Bob Corker: An Open Letter To Tennesseans

We are incredibly fortunate to live in a state in which companies worldwide are clamoring to establish a presence. Many attribute it to our pro-business culture, well-prepared workforce, low tax environment, right-to-work policies, and engaged citizenry.  That is why the announcement by Volkswagen to build its midsize sports utility vehicle and establish the South’s ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Wamp Refuses To Stoop

With less than two weeks before the Aug. 7 th election and the last week of early voting now underway in Hamilton County, Congressional challenger Weston Wamp sounded upbeat and relaxed early yesterday afternoon. “I’m pleased to say that I believe we are right where we need to be … maybe even more than we had hoped.” Wamp, who is challenging two-term incumbent Chuck Fleishmann ... (click for more)