Various Artists

White Country Blues 1926-1938: A Lighter Shade of Blue

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White Country Blues 1926-1938: A Lighter Shade of Blue is an excellent, revealing 48-track, double-disc collection culled from the Columbia, American and OKeh vaults. All of the material on this double-disc set was recorded by country artists that drew heavily from the blues, whether it was incorporating the genre into their own compositions or covering blues and hokum songs. Though there are several stars, such as Roy Acuff, many of the performers on White Country Blues are obscure, especially for listeners whose knowledge of country music stops at Hank Williams. That is one of the many reasons why White Country Blues is invaluable. It's a thoughtfully compiled and thorough historical reissue that presents a wealth of rare, fascinating material. While it might not always be an easy listen, it's remains an essential purchase for any comprehensive country collection.

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