The Carter Family

Gold Watch and Chain: Their Complete Victor Recordings (1933-34)

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The seventh of what is scheduled to be a nine-disc series of recordings, Gold Watch and Chain picks up the Carter Family's catalog in June 1933, by which time the Depression had devastated the record business and the Carters' sales along with it, such that, notes annotator Charles K. Wolfe, "For all practical purposes, many of the sides included in this album...were unheard by the general public at the time...." In fact, many actually were unheard, not being released until decades later. But the Carters' usual combination of hymns, traditional folk songs, and other old material continues to fascinate in their renditions, with their rough, expressive singing and innovative playing. The Rounder series has been doling out the recordings in 16-track, LP-length CDs since 1993; if one might wish for greater speed and more economical configurations, the music's quality nevertheless holds up

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