Various Artists

The Folkscene Collection, Vol. 3

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The third collection of recordings culled from Roz and Howard Larman's Los Angeles-based FolkScene radio show is another varied anthology that demonstrates the diversity of musical styles bunched under the umbrella term "folk." Someone is singing and playing an acoustic guitar on nearly every one of the 13 tracks, but the approaches differ greatly, from Guy Davis' bluesy "See Me When You Can" (recorded January 28, 2001) to Loreena McKennitt's new age harp playing on "Huron 'Beltane' Fire Dance." The most recognizable name is that of Jackson Browne, the most recognizable song Janis Ian's "At Seventeen" (recorded "circa 1975," and thus the oldest track), and there are established folkies such as Cheryl Wheeler, the late Kate Wolf, and Katy Moffatt (duetting with Rosie Flores on "Walkin' on the Moon"), along with excellent folk-pop bands that are either long broken up (the Alpha Band, featuring T Bone Burnett) or at least on hiatus (Bryndle, consisting of Karla Bonoff, Wendy Waldman, Andrew Gold, and Kenneth Edwards). All have interesting things to say with their music, and all respond well to the relatively intimate environs. This is not all people hunched over guitars in a radio studio, either. The Bryndle track, "Lucky One," boasts a drummer, and the McKennitt track has a full band recorded in a concert hall. With more than 25 years of shows to draw from, the Larmans may be able to assemble collections like this indefinitely, which would be just fine with folk fans.

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