Various Artists

The Legends of Bluegrass, Vol. 3

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This 16-track set is drawn from the vast CMH Records bluegrass catalog. CMH was founded in 1975 in L.A. by Martin Haerle and Arthur Smith (the man who wrote "Dueling Banjos"). Smith and Haerle assembled a pretty impressive bluegrass catalog in the '70s and early '80s, with artists like Lester Flatt, the Osborne Brothers, Jim & Jesse, Mac Wiseman, Merle Travis, Grandpa Jones, Carl Story, Don Reno, the Bluegrass Cardinals, and the Stonemans all recording extensively with CMH during the '70s and '80s. Sets like this one are essentially samplers of that vast catalog, and the music ranges from straight-ahead modern bluegrass to the bluegrassed folk of Merle Travis' "John Henry," and the odd, beautiful, pure charm of Grandpa Pa Jones' "Autoharp Concerto." It's all fun and nostalgic and full of high energy, the sort of thing modern bluegrass does so well.

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