Various Artists

Australia: Music from the New England Tablelands of New South Wales

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This 1998 release from Smithsonian Folkways uses modern day musicians to re-create the traditional Anglo-influenced Australian folk music of the late 1800s. As settlers from the British Isles and Europe brought their folk traditions with them, these tunes became absorbed into Australia's own culture and were often referred to as "bush music." The material featured here was collected by researchers in the 1980s and focuses strictly on music dating from 1850 to 1900. For the recording of this album, the assembled musicians primarily used period-specific instruments like the fiddle, button accordion, mouth organ, and the Anglo system concertina. A mix of instrumental dance tunes, hymns, shanteys, and hunting songs, the roots of this music may be Celtic and European in origin, but became something distinctly different and unique in the hands of this New England. Well researched, well curated, and very well played, this is an interesting and seemingly authentic portrait of what these songs might have sounded like before the age of recording.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1
1:43
2
2:49
3
1:54
4
1:54
5
3:38
6
3:31
7
2:35
8 2:49
9
5:25
10
2:06
11
2:47
12
4:27
13
4:17
14
2:29
15
2:38
16
3:46
17
3:55
18
3:54
19
5:05
20
3:04
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