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Karen Dalton



Delmore Recording Society | CAT #: DE30

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  • Newly unearthed rehearsal tape from 1966
  • Features Karen solo on banjo and guitar, plus 4 duets with Richard Tucker. Many never heard before covers including ‘Reason To Believe’ & ‘Don’t Make Promises’ by Tim Hardin, and ‘Other Side To This Life’ by Fred Neil.
  • Karen Dalton at her most intimate and unfiltered.
  • LP housed in tip-on jacket, with 4-page heavy insert, exclusive color portrait, and download card
  • Special Edition: Remastered/recut / re-pressed at Third Man on Clear Green Rocky Road vinyl with OBI


ARTIST: Karen Dalton
LABEL: Delmore Recording Society

  • Folk / Country
  • Americana


Karen Dalton was a remote, elusive creature. A hybrid of tough and tender with an unearthly voice that seemed to embody a time long past. As is often the case with such fragile beings, she instinctively understood that the only way to survive the harshness of the world around her was to keep herself hidden. So it comes as no great surprise that she rarely sang in public or ventured into the unnatural setting of a recording studio. Only twice, for 1969’s It’s So Hard To Tell Who’s Going To Love You The Best and then again for 1971’s In My Own Time, was she coaxed from her habitat into the studio. Other times she made music in casual settings, sitting around a kitchen table or wood burning stove with her friends, singing and playing until daybreak.

In 1966, Carl Baron brought his reel-to-reel over to her remote cabin in Summerville, Colorado, and recorded one of those exquisite musical evenings. Karen and Richard Tucker were rehearsing for a gig when Carl hit the “Record” button. The result is a 45-year-old tape, carefully exhumed, documenting Karen at her most raw and unfiltered. On it are Fred Neil and Tim Hardin songs we’ve never heard Karen give voice to before, as well as traditional songs she uncannily makes her own, including a devastating version of ‘Katie Cruel’, that is so powerful, it is as if the ghost of Katie Cruel seeped into her blood. This recording is a window to her Summerville cabin opened, allowing us to eavesdrop on Karen Dalton at her most pure and unaffected.


1. Reason To Believe
2. Katie Cruel
3. Cotton Eyed Joe
4. Green Rocky Road
5. Don't Make Promises
6. Other Side To This Life
7. God Bless The Child
8. Little Bit Of Rain
9. While You're On Your Way
10. 2:19 Train
11. Misery Blues
12. Mole In The Ground
13. Shiloh Town
14. Hallelujah




Karen Dalton was an American singer-songwriter born in Oklahoma in 1937. She was known for her unique and haunting voice, which captivated audiences in the Greenwich Village folk scene in the 1960s. Despite her talent, she struggled with alcoholism and drug addiction for much of her life, which limited her recording career. Dalton's two albums, "It's So Hard to Tell Who's Going to Love You the Best" and "In My Own Time," showcase her soulful voice and ability to interpret a wide range of songs, from traditional folk tunes to Bob Dylan covers. She passed away in 1993, but her music continues to inspire and influence artists today.
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1966 - Karen Dalton | Helix Sounds
LP / GreenDE30LP-GN
LP / GreenDE30LP-GN
$28.99/ea $0.00