The Carter Family

Worried Man Blues: Their Complete Victor Recordings (1930)

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The fourth volume in Rounder's projected eight-disc series of the Carter Family's 1927-1941 recordings for RCA Victor picks up in Memphis in May 1930 and continues in the same city in November for 16 sides, including the title track and "Lonesome Valley." There are an unusually large number of three-part harmony vocals in this set, much of which is given over to gospel songs. The only complaint about this brilliant chronological series is that it could be accomplished faster: This disc runs less than 48 minutes, and Rounder seems to be doling out the albums at a rate of two every two years, which means that it could take until the end of 1999 to hear them all. (The fifth volume, Sunshine in the Shadows: Their Complete Victor Recordings 1931-1932 was scheduled for release June 18, 1996, speeding up the schedule somewhat.)

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