Roy Acuff

King of Country Music [Proper Box]

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The King of Country Music finally receives his due with this four-disc box set that compiles 101 recordings Roy Acuff made between 1937 and 1950 for the Perfect, Vocalion, Conqueror, OKeh, and Columbia labels. Acuff was a country music standard-bearer on and off the Opry for so many years, it's amazing that this is the first time he has been honored with a box set. Many listeners will be surprised to learn that Acuff didn't start out with his distinctive open-throat singing style -- the entire first disc of King of Country Music sounds very little like the Acuff most country fans know. His early cuts, which encompass a selection of instrumentals, group vocal performances, and unabashedly secular songs, trace Acuff's evolution toward the style that became his hallmark. Around 1940 he began to exhibit the sound that became his trademark, while refining his image as a purveyor of sacred songs and weepers. His biggest early hits such as "Great Speckled Bird" and "Wabash Cannonball" are included, but despite the generous program, several of his late-'40s Columbia hits are omitted. The sound quality is excellent and the package includes a 40-page booklet with notes, photos, and session information. King of Country Music may not be the last word on Roy Acuff, but it is an extensive sampling of his music presented with far more care than one might expect given its low price.

Track Listing - Disc 1

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1 2:56
2 3:10
3 2:51
4 2:46
5
2:35
6
3:00
7 2:48
8 3:05
9
2:49
10 2:53
11
2:27
12
2:52
13
2:50
14
2:54
15
2:56
16
2:38
17 2:35
18
2:38
19 2:41
20
2:52
21 2:34
22 2:44
23
2:38
24 2:44
25
2:46

Track Listing - Disc 2

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1 2:32
2
2:20
3 2:48
4 2:47
5 2:39
6 2:54
7 2:55
8
2:40
9 2:45
10
2:43
11 2:49
12
2:49
13 2:52
14 2:18
15 2:57
16 2:44
17
2:50
18
2:45
19 2:48
20 2:52
21 2:38
22 2:45
23 2:48
24 2:50
25 2:59
26 2:35

Track Listing - Disc 3

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1 3:00
2
2:43
3 2:53
4 2:50
5 2:42
6 2:46
7 2:34
8 2:42
9 2:51
10 2:46
11 2:34
12 2:31
13 2:28
14 2:41
15 2:43
16 2:48
17 2:33
18 2:36
19 2:37
20 2:48
21 2:46
22 2:41
23 2:44
24 2:56
25 3:00

Track Listing - Disc 4

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1 2:38
2 2:38
3 2:36
4 2:53
5 2:36
6 2:40
7 2:29
8 2:52
9 2:30
10 2:59
11 2:43
12
2:29
13 3:01
14 2:58
15 2:38
16 2:50
17 2:58
18
2:40
19 2:55
20
2:51
21
2:36
22
2:47
23 2:48
24 2:43
25 2:30
blue highlight denotes track pick