Various Artists

American Folk Music

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A bit like a single-disc, condensed version of Harry Smith's famous Anthology of American Folk Music (most of these tracks can be found there), this fine compilation features commercially released 78s from the 1920s and 1930s, and pretty much covers the gamut of early American vernacular music, with a fair sampling of Cajun, country-blues, gospel-blues, Appalachian folk and early country, capably representing the many varied ways that America was singing at the dawn of recorded music. With tracks from string bands, jug bands, country-blues players, street-corner preachers, Louisiana dance bands and several impressive selections by some of Appalachia's most storied modal banjo players, including Clarence Ashley, Buell Kazee and Bascom Lamar Lunsford, as well as the utterly unique banjo blues of Dock Boggs, this makes an affordable, generous (it clocks in at a little over 72-minutes-long) introduction to one of the most important and wide-open periods in American musical history.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
1 2:55 Spotify
2 3:00 Spotify
3
2:59 Spotify
4 3:17 Spotify
5 3:05 Spotify
6 2:59
7 2:59 Spotify
8 2:47 Spotify
9 3:01 Spotify
10 3:17 Spotify
11 2:33 Spotify
12 2:56 Spotify
13 3:01 Spotify
14 3:27 Spotify
15 2:58 Spotify
16 3:17 Spotify
17 3:14 Spotify
18 3:20 Spotify
19 2:58 Spotify
20 3:02 Spotify
21 2:57 Spotify
22 3:22 Spotify
23 2:47 Spotify
24 3:01 Spotify
blue highlight denotes track pick