Various Artists

Stars & Stripes Forever [CHM]

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The bottom of the cover of Stars & Stripes Forever reads "13 Grassroots & Bluegrass Hits," but truthfully, these versions of patriotic popular songs like "Over There," "It's a Long Way to Tipperary," and "The Star Spangled Banner" couldn't be called hits. Nor could Dick Shuyler's version of Merle Haggard's country classic "Okie from Muskogee" ever be mistaken for the hit version or patriotic to anyone not from Oklahoma. But despite its apparent hitlessness, Stars & Stripes Forever does manage to strike its target. If nothing else, the journeyman performances on Stars & Stripes Forever hark back to times when patriotism was a more willing citizen endeavor than its desperate modern-day counterpart.

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