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Bristol Sessions 1927-1928 boxed set

Desert Dancer 19 Apr 11 - 02:00 PM
Desert Dancer 19 Apr 11 - 11:21 PM
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Subject: Bristol Sessions 1927-1928 boxed set
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 19 Apr 11 - 02:00 PM

The Bristol Sessions 1927-1928 from the Bear Family

The Bristol Sessions, 1927-1928: The Big Bang of Country Music at amazon.com

How The Bristol Sessions Changed Country Music
on Fresh Air, NPR
19 April 2011

by Ed Ward

[NPR Editor's note: A new five-disc box set, The Bristol Sessions, 1927-1928, documents a series of historic recordings made on the Tennessee-Virginia border. Ed Ward has this reflection on the sessions and the music they spawned.]

"The Victor Co. will have a recording machine in Bristol for 10 days beginning Monday to record records — inquire at our store."

That was the text in a small box that appeared in the Bristol (Tenn.) News-Bulletin on July 24, 1927. Three days later, one of the paper's reporters sat in on a recording session, where Ralph Peer cut a few sides on Ernest Stoneman and his family. The Stonemans were locals, well-known in Bristol, and had a successful career with Victor.

"He received from the company $3,600 last year as his share of the proceeds on his records," the story read — in other words, about three and a half times the average national wage.

That did it. Starting at 9 o'clock on the morning of July 28, musicians by the score showed up at the Taylor-Christian Hat Company building on State Street — Virginia on its north side, Tennessee on the south side — and waited for their chance.

Famous Finds

The first soon-to-be-famous name to step in front of the microphone was Blind Alfred Reed, a fiddler who would later record the classic "How Can a Poor Man Stand Such Times and Live." But, aside from a train-wreck ballad, he recorded sacred material.

Ralph Peer must have figured that the rural market wanted white gospel music, because he sure recorded a lot of it in Bristol. One of his favorites — and mine — is the very formal-sounding Alfred G. Karnes, who had just bought a Gibson harp-guitar for $375 to accompany himself.

But Stoneman and his friends and family had also shown Peer that traditional material sold, so J.P. Nester and Norman Edmonds got their chance, too, and recorded a classic, "Train on the Island."

Nobody seems to know what the words to "Train on the Island" meant, but with their picking, who cares? Nester and Edmonds led off Aug. 1's sessions at 12:30 p.m., but five hours later, two women and a man stepped into the room, and everything changed.

A.P. Carter, his wife Sara and Sara's teenage sister Maybelle Addington were from the surrounding countryside, in Maces Springs, Va., and Peer knew he'd struck gold — especially when Maybelle and Sara came back the next morning and cut two duets. The Carter Family, as they called themselves, became one of the biggest acts in America, continuing on in this original form until 1942.

Lightning Strikes Again

Lightning struck again on Aug. 4. The Tenneva Ramblers were four young men who'd been working out of Asheville, N.C., and Peer had encouraged them to audition. Nobody's sure just what happened, but by the time the recording session came around, their lead singer had left and recorded two songs by himself, including "Sleep Baby Sleep."

Tuberculosis would kill Jimmie Rodgers five years later, but he probably sold more records for Victor than any artist before Elvis Presley. And, yes, the Tenneva Ramblers got their chance later that afternoon, but they don't sound very special.

Peer packed up his equipment and took his masters with him to Camden, N.J., to start pressing the many keepers he'd recorded. He returned to Bristol the next year, between Oct. 27 and Nov. 4, 1928. His only major find this time was the Stamps Quartet, whose "Come to the Savior" sold 13,792 copies, the most of any of the Bristol recordings.

The Stamps, in one form or another, continued through 1980, and counted Presley as a major fan. But my favorite from the 1928 sessions was the wonderfully named Shortbuckle Roark and Family, who concluded Ralph Peer's epic act of discovery with a classic, "I Truly Understand That You Love Another Man."

---

~ Becky in Tucson


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Subject: RE: Bristol Sessions 1927-1928 boxed set
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 19 Apr 11 - 11:21 PM

Description of boxed set from the Bear Family and track list from Amazon.com:

5-CD boxed set (LP-size) with 120-page hardcover book. 124 tracks; playing time approx. 6 hrs 25 mns.

'The single most important event in the history of country music.' (JOHNNY CASH, on the 1927 Bristol sessions). This is the foundation of country music! An unsurpassed storehouse of traditional American music, featuring the first recordings by the Carter Family and Jimmie Rodgers. The legendary sessions issued complete for the first and only time, including the ultra-rare follow-up sessions from 1928!

The recording trip made by Victor Records to Bristol, Tennessee in July-August 1927 was a defining moment in country music. Producer Ralph Peer found two acts that acquired national and international fame: Jimmie Rodgers and the Carter Family. But more than a hundred other recordings were made at the Bristol sessions of 1927 and '28. There were ballad singers, street evangelists, string bands, gospel quartets, harmonica virtuosos, Holiness preachers, blues guitarists and rural storytellers. A snapshot of rural American music was caught in an era of rapid change: pictures of a past almost beyond recall, but preserved for ever in these magnificent recordings.

The five CDs in this set gather every surviving recording from these sessions, including alternative takes. The accompanying 120-page, LP-sized hardcover book contains newly researched essays on the background to the sessions and on the individual artists, with many rare and unpublished photographs. Also included are complete song lyrics and a detailed discography, illustrated with reproductions of the original recording sheets.

Disc: 1
1. ERNEST V. STONEMAN - E. KAHLE BREWER - WALTER MOONEY: The Dying Girl's Farewell
2. ERNEST V. STONEMAN - E. KAHLE BREWER - WALTER MOONEY: Tell Mother I Will Meet Her
3. ERNEST V. STONEMAN - MISS IRMA FROST - UNCLE ECK DUNFORD: The Mountaineer's Courtship
4. ERNEST V. STONEMAN - MISS IRMA FROST: Midnight On The Stormy Deep
5. ERNEST V. STONEMAN & HIS DIXIE MOUNTAINEERS: Sweeping Through The Gates
6. ERNEST V. STONEMAN & HIS DIXIE MOUNTAINEERS: I Know My Name Is There
7. ERNEST V. STONEMAN & HIS DIXIE MOUNTAINEERS: Are You Washed In The Blood?
8. ERNEST V. STONEMAN & HIS DIXIE MOUNTAINEERS: No More Good-Byes
9. ERNEST V. STONEMAN & HIS DIXIE MOUNTAINEERS: The Resurrection (take 1)
10. ERNEST V. STONEMAN & HIS DIXIE MOUNTAINEERS: The Resurrection (take 2)
11. ERNEST V. STONEMAN & HIS DIXIE MOUNTAINEERS: I Am Resolved (take 1)
12. ERNEST V. STONEMAN & HIS DIXIE MOUNTAINEERS: I Am Resolved (take 2)
13. ERNEST PHIPPS AND HIS HOLINESS QUARTET: I Want To Go Where Jesus Is
14. ERNEST PHIPPS AND HIS HOLINESS QUARTET: Do, Lord, Remember Me
15. ERNEST PHIPPS AND HIS HOLINESS QUARTET: Old Ship Of Zion
16. ERNEST PHIPPS AND HIS HOLINESS QUARTET: Jesus Getting Us Ready For That Great Day
17. ERNEST PHIPPS AND HIS HOLINESS QUARTET: Happy In Prison
18. ERNEST PHIPPS AND HIS HOLINESS QUARTET: Don't Grieve After Me
19. UNCLE ECK DUNFORD - HATTIE STONEMAN: What Will I Do, For My Money's All Gone
20. UNCLE ECK DUNFORD: The Whip-poor-will's Song
21. UNCLE ECK DUNFORD: Skip To Ma Lou, My Darling
22. UNCLE ECK DUNFORD - ERNEST STONEMAN: Barney McCoy
23. BLUE RIDGE CORN SHUCKERS: Old Time Corn Shuckin', Part 1
24. BLUE RIDGE CORN SHUCKERS: Old Time Corn Shuckin', Part 2
Disc: 2
1. JOHNSON BROTHERS: The Jealous Sweetheart (take 1)
2. JOHNSON BROTHERS: The Jealous Sweetheart (take 2)
3. JOHNSON BROTHERS: A Passing Policeman
4. JOHNSON BROTHERS: Just A Message From Carolina
5. BLIND ALFRED REED: The Wreck Of The Virginian (take 1)
6. BLIND ALFRED REED: The Wreck Of The Virginian (take 2)
7. BLIND ALFRED REED: I Mean To Live For Jesus
8. BLIND ALFRED REED: You Must Unload
9. BLIND ALFRED REED: Walking In The Way With Jesus (take 1)
10. BLIND ALFRED REED: Walking In The Way With Jesus (take 2)
11. JOHNSON BROTHERS WITH TENNESSEE WILDCATS: Two Brothers Are We
12. JOHNSON BROTHERS WITH TENNESSEE WILDCATS: The Soldier's Poor Little Boy13/ JOHNSON BROTHERS: I Want To See My Mother (Ten Thousand Miles Away)
13. EL WATSON: Pot Licker Blues
14. EL WATSON: Narrow Gauge Blues
15. B.F. SHELTON: Cold Penitentiary Blues
16. B.F. SHELTON: Oh Molly Dear
17. B.F. SHELTON: Pretty Polly
18. B.F. SHELTON: Darling Cora
19. ALFRED G. KARNES: Called To The Foreign Field
20. ALFRED G. KARNES: I Am Bound For The Promised Land
21. ALFRED G. KARNES: Where We'll Never Grow Old
22. ALFRED G. KARNES: When They Ring The Golden Bells
23. ALFRED G. KARNES: To The Work
24. J.P. NESTER: Train On The Island
25. J.P. NESTER: Black-Eyed Susie
26. BULL MOUNTAIN MOONSHINERS: Johnny Goodwin
Disc: 3
1. THE CARTER FAMILY: Bury Me Under The Weeping Willow
2. THE CARTER FAMILY: Little Log Cabin By The Sea
3. THE CARTER FAMILY: The Poor Orphan Child
4. THE CARTER FAMILY: The Storms Are On The Ocean
5. THE CARTER FAMILY: Single Girl, Married Girl
6. THE CARTER FAMILY: The Wandering Boy
7. ALCOA QUARTET: Remember Me, O Mighty One
8. ALCOA QUARTET: I'm Redeemed
9. HENRY WHITTER: Henry Whitter's Fox Chase
10. HENRY WHITTER: Rain Crow Bill
11. THE SHELOR FAMILY: Big Bend Gal
12. THE SHELOR FAMILY: Suzanna Gal
13. THE SHELOR FAMILY: Sandy River Belle (take 1)
14. THE SHELOR FAMILY: Sandy River Belle (take 2)
15. THE SHELOR FAMILY: Billy Grimes, The Rover
16. MR. & MRS. J.W. BAKER: The Newmarket Wreck
17. MR. & MRS. J.W. BAKER: On The Banks Of The Sunny Tennessee
18. JIMMIE RODGERS: The Soldier's Sweetheart
19. JIMMIE RODGERS: Sleep Baby Sleep
20. TENNEVA RAMBLERS: The Longest Train I Ever Saw
21. TENNEVA RAMBLERS: Sweet Heaven When I Die
22. TENNEVA RAMBLERS: Miss 'Liza, Poor Gal
23. WEST VIRGINIA COON HUNTERS: Greasy String
24. WEST VIRGINIA COON HUNTERS: Your Blue Eyes Run Me Crazy
25. TENNESSEE MOUNTAINEERS: Standing On The Promises
26. TENNESSEE MOUNTAINEERS: At The River
Disc: 4
1. SMYTH COUNTY RAMBLERS: My Name Is Ticklish Reuben
2. SMYTH COUNTY RAMBLERS: Way Down In Alabama
3. ALFRED G. KARNES: Do Not Wait 'Till I'm Laid 'Neath The Clay
4. ALFRED G. KARNES: The Days Of My Childhood Plays
5. ALFRED G. KARNES: We Shall All Be Reunited
6. ERNEST PHIPPS AND HIS HOLINESS SINGERS: If The Light Has Gone Out In Your Soul
7. ERNEST PHIPPS AND HIS HOLINESS SINGERS: Went Up In The Clouds Of Heaven
8. ERNEST PHIPPS AND HIS HOLINESS SINGERS: I Know That Jesus Set Me Free
9. ERNEST PHIPPS AND HIS HOLINESS SINGERS: Shine On Me
10. ERNEST PHIPPS AND HIS HOLINESS SINGERS: Bright Tomorrow
11. ERNEST PHIPPS AND HIS HOLINESS SINGERS: A Little Talk With Jesus
12. HOWARD - PEAK (THE BLIND MUSICIANS): I Cannot Be Your Sweetheart
13. HOWARD - PEAK (THE BLIND MUSICIANS): Three Black Sheep
14. CLARENCE GREENE: Good-night Darling
15. CLARENCE GREENE: Little Bunch Of Roses
16. THE STONEMAN FAMILY: The Broken-Hearted Lover
17. UNCLE ECK DUNFORD: Angeline, The Baker
18. UNCLE ECK DUNFORD: Old Shoes And Leggin's
19. THE STONEMAN FAMILY: We Parted By The Riverside
20. ERNEST STONEMAN'S DIXIE MOUNTAINEERS: Down To Jordan And Be Saved
21. ERNEST STONEMAN'S DIXIE MOUNTAINEERS: There's A Light Lit Up In Galilee
22. THE STONEMAN FAMILY: Going Up The Mountain After Liquor, Part 1
23. THE STONEMAN FAMILY: Going Up The Mountain After Liquor, Part 2
24. THE STONEMAN FAMILY: The Spanish Merchant's Daughter
25. THE STONEMAN FAMILY: Too Late
Disc: 5
1. STAMPS QUARTET: I'll Be Happy
2. STAMPS QUARTET: Like The Rainbow
3. STAMPS QUARTET: Because I Love Him
4. STAMPS QUARTET: Come To The Savior
5. STAMPS QUARTET: Do Your Best, Then Wear A Smile
6. STAMPS QUARTET: We Shall Reach Home
7. SMITH BROTHERS: My Mother Is Waiting For Me In Heaven Above
8. SMITH BROTHERS: She Has Climbed The Golden Stair
9. PALMER SISTERS: We'll Sing On That Shore
10. PALMER SISTERS: Singing The Story Of Grace
11. PALMER SISTERS: Help Me To Find The Way
12. PALMER SISTERS: He'll Be With Me
13. TARTER & GAY: Brownie Blues
14. TARTER & GAY: Unknown Blues
15. CAROLINA TWINS: Where Is My Mamma?
16. CAROLINA TWINS: When You Go A'Courtin'
17. CAROLINA TWINS: I Sat Upon The River Bank
18. CAROLINA TWINS: New Orleans Is The Town I Like Best
19. CAROLINA TWINS: She Tells Me That I Am Sweet
20. CAROLINA TWINS: Mr. Brown, Here I Come
21. SHORTBUCKLE ROARK & FAMILY: I Truly Understand, You Love Another Man
22. SHORTBUCKLE ROARK & FAMILY: My Mother's Hands


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Subject: RE: Bristol Sessions 1927-1928 boxed set
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 19 Apr 11 - 11:27 PM

Review notes by Tad Dickens, The Roanoke Times, March 26, 2011 (these are a sidebar to the story linked and copied in the next post)

    "The Bristol Sessions 1927-1928: The Big Bang of Country Music" five-disc box set compiles every song recorded at both the iconic 1927 dates and the less commercially successful 1928 dates, including multiple takes.
    The music — co-produced by ETSU professor Ted Olson and Grammy-winner Christopher King , and mastered by Chris Zwarg — sounds beautiful. The sound quality is largely attributable to Ralph Peer, who was recording with some of the best gear available at the time. But this set sounds even better than a 1990s-era release that included only the 1927 work.
    Turn it up late at night and feel the ghosts.
    The book is full of details but easy to read and loaded with photos of the performers, advertisements — "Don't deny yourself the sheer joy of Orthophonic music" is a favorite — and the Twin Cities of Bristol, where State Street still divides Tennessee and Virginia. Also included: lyrics to all the songs, transcribed by Phil Wells.
    Go to blogs.roanoke.com/cutnscratch to read my thoughts on some of the music, including numbers by Alfred G. Karnes, a Bedford County native who had moved to Kentucky to preach and sing. Karnes' thumb-snapping guitar work and insistent strumming on his own "Called to the Foreign Field" combines with his tough, flexible and expressive vocal.


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Subject: RE: Bristol Sessions 1927-1928 boxed set
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 19 Apr 11 - 11:28 PM

'Bristol Sessions' rich in history

By Tad Dickens
The Roanoke Times
March 26, 2011

The Bristol Sessions -- pre-Depression sides revered for their influence on country, bluegrass and traditional music -- just got a new shine.

A box set called "The Bristol Sessions 1927-1928: The Big Bang of Country Music" was released earlier this month on the Bear Family Records label. And the Bristol-based Birthplace of Country Music Alliance threw a shindig March 12-13 to celebrate the five-CD, 112-page book package.

Only one person who participated in those recordings is still alive. Her name is Georgia Warren, and she was 12 years old when she, her father and 18 other a cappella hymn singers made the trek from nearby Bluff City, Tenn., to the upper floors of 408 State St. in August 1927.

And there was Warren on March 12 -- sitting in the front row at the box set release party, in an antique store just two blocks from where producer Ralph Peer had set up the Victor Talking Machine Company's cutting-edge gear to record mountain melodies.

In her lap was a copy of the new box set. In front of her, descendants of the Stonemans and Carters, key performers from those sessions, played their ancestors' music.

The box set completes a remarkable collection for the 96-year-old Warren. She still has an original copy of the music that she and her mates in the Tennessee Mountaineers recorded late that Aug. 5. Peer had sent her father the disc that contains "Standing On The Promises" and "Shall We Gather At The River."

Peer and his team worked on the second and third floors of a building then used by the Taylor-Christian Hat Co. (That building is long gone, but the Birthplace of Country Music Alliance has recently moved into a newer structure at that address.)

"We went upstairs and behind curtains, and I was scared to death," Warren said. "We come early, but Jimmie Rodgers, you know that day that they had that quarrel. And we had to spend all day, and we didn't get to sing till late in the afternoon on account of it. But he came back though and made his record."

The Tennessee Mountaineers were, in fact, the last group to record at those historic sessions.

Historic discoveries

According to documents from the session included in the box set's accompanying book, Rodgers had actually recorded his numbers the day before. He and his musical partners in the Tenneva Ramblers had fallen out "for reasons that continue to be debated by scholars," according to the box set's book, co-written by East Tennessee State University professor Ted Olson and British music writer Tony Russell.

Peer was the first to record Rodgers, and he was impressed by the Mississippi native's yodeling skills. He invited Rodgers to the Victor studios in Camden, N.J., later that year. There, Rodgers laid down "Blue Yodel (T for Texas)," the hit that put him on the national map.

Rodgers died of tuberculosis in 1933, but "The Singing Brakeman" would come to be considered the father of country music. In 1961, Rodgers was the first performer inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame, in Nashville, Tenn., but his influence runs so deep that in 1986 the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inducted him, too.

The "Blue Yodeler" was not the only star to emerge from the 1927 sessions.

The Carter Family -- A.P. Carter, his wife, Sara, and Sara's cousin, Maybelle Addington -- famously traveled from Maces Springs (now Hiltons), fording the Holston River and changing many tires along the way to make their first recordings.

The work they did in Bristol launched their own career "as the most important singing group in country music history" while helping define the genre's sound, Olson and Russell wrote.

The Stoneman Family, led by Ernest "Pop" Stoneman, was there, too. Stoneman, from Galax, was the reason Peer came to Bristol in the first place. He had already worked with Peer, recording tunes including his cover of "The Sinking of the Titanic," one of the first "hillbilly music" hits. (Read more about Stoneman.)

Rousing performances

Several Carter and Stoneman descendants were on hand at the box set release party, which Larry Groce of NPR's "Mountain Stage" emceed. The next night, Groce would host "Mountain Stage" at the nearby Paramount Center.

Members of the Stoneman family, including Roni Stoneman of "Hee Haw" fame, performed songs that had been in their clan for decades. John Carter Cash, son of Johnny and June Carter Cash, and Dale Jett, a grandson of A.P. and Sara Carter, joined other family members to perform Carter Family standards. The Carter descendants closed the party with a rousing singalong on "Will The Circle Be Unbroken."

After the show, Warren handed her copy of the set to Bear Family Records founder Richard Weize for his autograph. Later, she said that she still enjoys the music of her youth.

"I like the old singing better than I do this high-falootin' stuff you can't keep up with and can't understand a word they're saying, and all the squealing," she said. "I don't like that kind of singing."

Is there still a lot to learn from the old tunes?

"Oh, law, yes," she said. "Oh yes."


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Subject: RE: Bristol Sessions 1927-1928 boxed set
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 19 Apr 11 - 11:30 PM

A star-forming explosion of old, weird, cosmic American music

Review by Tim Holmes, Record Collector

Only a handful of recordings can be called genuinely historical – and then only in retrospect: Robert Johnson at the Gunther Hotel in San Antonio (1936), The Beatles with George Martin at Abbey Road (1962) and, of course, Ralph Peer's Bristol, Tennessee sessions of 1927 and '28.

The Carter Family and Jimmie Rodgers were "discovered" at Peer's temporary field studio, set up in a hat factory, but anyone listening to this 5-CD collection without the benefit of a cast list would not necessarily pick either out as the "best" (though, it has to be said, the consummate "blue yodeling" was already in place). There's superbly accomplished playing from the very first track on the first CD, by Ernest V Stoneman and some of his many compadres. Stoneman makes an interesting case study: he was already making a substantial living as both a performing musician and a recording star ($3,600 per annum when the average annual wage was $1,000). In fact, Stoneman was one of the main reasons Peer set up shop in Bristol, since he knew he would be able to get viable new material for release.

Something else evident from that first track is the quality of the recording. Bear Family clearly put a lot of effort into cleaning up the overall sound, but the underlying material has to be good for that to work, and Peer's state-of-the art recording kit paid dividends. Not all of the tracks are equally clear – it seems the new Western Electric microphones weren't too happy with rougher-edged voices or the sonic vibrations that slightly ragged harmonies generate – but the general standard is excellent.

The Bristol sessions are now hailed as country's Big Bang but, at the time, Peer was just recording music. Labels came later as a result of commercial imperatives – and the variety of material here shows clearly that there was no single "hillbilly" musical tradition; or, alternatively, that it was enormously inclusive.

Take Disc Three as an example: The first eight tracks are by The Carter Family, including two classics by Sara and Maybelle without AP – Single Girl, Married Girl and The Wandering Boy. As Red Olson and Tony Russell write in their sleevenotes, this session "went a long way towards defining the sound of modern country music". But straight after come two immaculately-harmonised sacred songs from The Alcoa Quartet and then a pair of harmonica-driven stompers from Henry Whittier. The first of them, Henry Whittier's Fox Chase, is an intriguing combination of blues, novelty and folk tradition: think Stone Fox Chase (c'mon – Old Grey Whistle Test) performed not by slick Nashville sessioneers, but by a single man standing on a mountain ridge in Virginia trying to entertain a crowd of miners drunk on moonshine. The good-time factor continues with The Shelor Family, whose clearly distinguishable Irish tradition could have been a template for The Pogues; then the raggedy old-time songs of Mr & Mrs J W Baker, the ineffable Jimmie Rodgers… and so on, through The Tenneva Ramblers, The West Virginia Coon Hunters and finishing off with more sacred songs from The Tennessee Mountaineers. In summary, a marvellously eclectic mix.

Being a Bear Family product, the attention to detail and packaging is beyond reproach. Inside the box is a vinyl-album-size book full of information about the sessions, the musicians, the songs and the discs, illustrated with evocative old photographs and maps. As with historic recordings, there are very few genuine "must-have" collections, but this, like Harry Smith's Anthology Of American Folk Music, is definitely one of them.
5 stars 5 stars 5 stars 5 stars 5 stars

Bear Family | BCD 16094-1/2/3/4/5 EK (5-CD)


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Subject: RE: Bristol Sessions 1927-1928 boxed set
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 19 Apr 11 - 11:35 PM

Bear Family's YouTube ad for the set. It sure looks purty.

~ Becky in Tucson


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Subject: RE: Bristol Sessions 1927-1928 boxed set
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 09:53 PM

Nobody? Or are you just speechless at the prospect?

~ B in T


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Subject: RE: Bristol Sessions 1927-1928 boxed set
From: GUEST,DWR
Date: 20 Apr 11 - 11:42 PM

Oh, no, Becky. It's just that you were covering it so well, there remained little TO say! It is a bit pricey, but then so is just about anything anymore. But there certainly is value for the money spent. Only problem I have is that I have so many of the recordings already that it makes it all the more expensive, since I'd be buying so many duplicates.

Thanks for the info. It is appreciated. I haven't looked at Max's improvement thread yet, but some indication as to how many times a thread has been viewed would help people to see that their efforts here have been rewarded, even though the responses may be few.


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Subject: RE: Bristol Sessions 1927-1928 boxed set
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 21 Apr 11 - 12:18 AM

Hmm, that raises an interesting question, Guest,DWR: are there tracks on this that are not otherwise available?

I have to admit that I don't own any lovely Bear Family sets, but I do covet them...

~ Becky in Tucson


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Subject: RE: Bristol Sessions 1927-1928 boxed set
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 02 May 11 - 06:47 PM

The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band On Mountain Stage (link to audio there).

"This week marks Mountain Stage's return to country-music birthplace Bristol, the historic border town in Tennessee and Virginia where The Carter Family, Jimmie Rodgers, the Stoneman Family and more recorded some of country music's earliest hits. The visit is in conjunction with the release of a new box set of the 1927-28 recording sessions, Bristol Sessions: The Big Bang of Country Music.

"The pioneering group The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, which re-introduced America to country legends Doc Watson, Roy Acuff, Earl Scruggs, Jimmy Martin and Mother Maybelle Carter with its landmark 1972 album Will the Circle Be Unbroken, were a fitting choice to appear in Bristol. Since its formation in California some 45 years ago, The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band have recorded folk, bluegrass and country rock, and laid the foundation for generations of bands, from The Eagles to Alabama to Uncle Tupelo."

Set list:
    "You Ain't Goin' Nowhere"
    "The Resurrection"
    "Tulsa Sounds Like Trouble To Me"
    "My Walkin' Shoes"
    "Mr. Bojangles"
    "Bayou Jubilee"
    "Jambalaya"

Not very old-time country, but very NGDB, I guess.

~ Becky in Long Beach


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Subject: RE: Bristol Sessions 1927-1928 boxed set
From: GUEST,Hootennanny
Date: 03 May 11 - 05:18 AM

The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band re-introduced Doc Watson? Since when did Doc Watson need re-introducing? I don't believe his populariy ever wained but has just constantly grown ever since Ralph Rinzler via Tom "Clarence" Ashley brought him to our attention.
The Dirt Band albums may have spread knowledge of this fine music to a wider audience but Re-Introducing is the wrong word.

Hoot - in nit-picking mode


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Subject: RE: Bristol Sessions 1927-1928 boxed set
From: Arkie
Date: 03 May 11 - 09:49 AM

I have cassettes of the Bristol Sessions which were issued quite a few years ago and wonder if this is what Bear has reproduced. The cassettes should have been reissued on CD if that were not before this. There was some great music captured in Bristol by Ralph Peer. It was also an extremely important event. One account of the event stated that Peer was not overly impressed by the Carter Family initially, but when he heard Sara's voice that all changed. I am glad to know the Bristol Sessions are now on CD. Just wish I could afford it.


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