Various Artists

Country Quebec: 1925-1955

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Country music's image is all-American, with a home south of the Mason-Dixon line. But really, it's always been international. And it makes perfect sense that there's been country music in Canada -- even Francophone Canada -- as long as it's existed anywhere else. The Arcadians, after all, brought Cajun music to the U.S., and with a largely rural, working class population, country music was something that spoke to the people directly. So, shining a spotlight on 30 years of Quebecois country music is a fascinating idea, and a remarkable insight into the music itself -- in a way, like hearing early U.S. country refracted through a prism. The vast majority of the artists are just names -- possibly only Mary Bolduc might raise a flicker of recognition. Here she takes a break from her better-known mouth music to yodel with partner Andre Carmel on "Les Belles-Meres." This is an album of culture shifts, there's no doubt about that, where familiar tunes (often, interestingly, more on the Western end of country & western) have entirely new lyrics -- which are not just translations of the English originals. This is definitely music by the people, for the people, simply performed without guile or glitz, and a fascinating little slice of North American history.

Track Listing - Disc 1

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1 2:54
2 2:27
3 3:14
4 3:29
5 3:16
6 2:40
7 2:43
8 2:16
9 2:42
10 2:40
11 2:59
12 3:19
13 2:43
14 2:21
15
3:03
16 2:43
17 2:24
18 2:12
19 2:53
20 3:28
21 2:30
22 2:58
23
2:48
24 3:01
25 2:54

Track Listing - Disc 2

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1
2:55
2 3:21
3 2:20
4 2:50
5 2:55
6 2:37
7 2:50
8 2:48
9
2:49
10 2:45
11
2:30
12 3:02
13 2:37
14
2:16
15 2:41
16 2:58
17 2:50
18 2:49
19 2:44
20 2:44
21 3:10
22
2:50
23 2:53
24 2:52
25 3:08
blue highlight denotes track pick