Among the many country stars that found stardom performing on Shreveport’s storied Louisiana Hayride radio program few were better loved than Webb Pierce. After an auspicious start recording such local Shreveport favorites as “Groovie Boogie Woogie Boy” he would go on to become the best selling country artist of the ‘50’s. Yet despite Pierce’s sensational commercial successes he did not allow his fame to dilute the power of his art. Many of the classic tunes featured here topped the Country charts, yet the uncompromising bleakness of the rounder’s lament “There Stands the Glass” and the steadfast traditionalism of Pierce’s barebones take on “In the Jailhouse Now” prove that no amount of commercial success could sway Pierce to abandon his honkytonk roots. Though this 20th Century Masters collection provides a fine introduction to Pierce and his work, first time listeners will no doubt be left hungry for more of his rich baritone and inimitable songwriting.