Newman goes into Long's demagogic populism with a bragging song written in his voice, "Kingfish" - as well as a cover of Long's chirpy little commie campaign song "Every Man a King." The vulnerability of the crackers that makes them open to the foolishness of a Huey Long comes out in the humiliated begging of "Mr. President (Have Pity on the Working Man)".
This release comes as a two CD set. The first disc consists of the original album. The second CD has its own title, "Johnny Cutler's Birthday". It consists of the demo sessions that show how the album started out even more heavily conceptualized, with his narration explaining the concept and narrating the story of a cracker's birthday party. The piano demos of the eventual Good Old Boys trade the understated grandeur of the final orchestral arrangements for the intimacy of his solo performances. The songs work either way, but this might give you better appreciation of the power of the final arrangements.
On top of which, this includes a half dozen songs that he didn't use in the 1974 release at all. The best songs made the original album, but you've got some really good songs that are still not good enough to make it onto Good Old Boys.
Song for song, this is Newman's best and most emotionally nuanced album. It also comes out as the most cohesive album statement, playing together in the contrasts of style yet consistency of effect. You need this album.
[CLICK HERE for a particularly good vintage review of the original album.]