The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #8916   Message #56599
Posted By: rich r
31-Jan-99 - 12:51 PM
Thread Name: Songs of the American Civil War
Subject: RE: Songs of the American Civil War
The Reno & Smiley recording is interesting. The songs trace a sort of chronology of some of the events of the Civil War from a southern perspective. All of the songs are new creations. As the album cover states: "New and original FOLK SONGS written in commemoration of the centennial of the American Civil War, The war between the states, and sung by Reno & Smiley" Judgning from this I would guess the recording was done sometime in the late 1950's or early 1960's. The LP I have (King 756) has 1988 on the disk label, but I assume that to be a reissue perhaps from a different company than the original. Consistent with the earlier release are pictures of young Reno & Smiley on the back and biographical information that talks about their WWII activities and that they got together to form "The Tennessee Cutups". The lyrics to the songs were written by Dr. Albert J Russo, a medical doctor from Virginia with an interest in folklore and folk music. He wrote a poetic history of the Civil War called "Lee's Command and Other Confederate Poems". He was also a member of the Roanoke VA Civil War Centennial Commission. The poem "Lee's Command" is one of the songs on the record. The poems were set to music by Don Reno.

rich r