Monday, July 28, 2014

Dancing Mary Ann's Grass Skirt is on Fire in My Dreams of the Jungle

I originally guessed that his album was something concocted especially for tourists. I guessed incorrectly. Tradition (also Tradition Records) is an American folk music label, launched originally in 1956 by Pat Clancy and his brothers Tom Clancy and Liam Clancy, with the financial support from Diane Hamilton. The label released several historic field recordings of country, folk and blues musicians, some in conjunction with archivist Alan Lomax, as well as contemporary albums. Its folk roster (The Clancy Brothers, Odetta) proved influential on the bohemian movement of the late 50s and early 60s, impacting young musicians such as Bob Dylan.

 It's available in digital formats, if you're so inclined. Here it is in its cheap vinyl original glory.

Native Steel Drum Band - A Live Recording

A1     Fire Down Below - 3:22
A2     Grass Skirt - 3:00
A3     Mary Ann - 3:45
A4     Out Of My Dreams - 1:20
A5     Spear Dance - 4:49
B1     Zulu Chant - 4:11
B2     La Paloma - 2:36
B3     Jungle - 3:07
B4     Native Mambo - 4:22
B5     Spur Dance - 3:43

Friday, July 25, 2014

Cynic Overlook

Because the name of the artists is in smallish type and in a terrible choice of colors, I initially thought that the band name was Cynic Overlook, which I thought was brilliant. It's still not a bad name for an album, though. Dick and Anne Albin were a married couple who had some minor success on the folk circuit from the late 60's through the mid 80's (at which point they divorced), including founding the Pine Mountain State Park GREAT AMERICAN DULCIMER CONVENTION and touring overseas for the Department of Defense.

This 1981 release is apparently their penultimate LP as a duo. It's humorous and well-played - definitely worth a listen.

Dick Albin (vocals, banjo, autoharp, hammered dulcimer, guitar), Anne Albin (vocals, guitar, dulcimer), Dave Beck (drums), Too Slim Fred LaBour (bass), Woody Paul (fiddle), Doyle Grisham (pedal steel), Barry King (bass/electric guitar), Mike Hutchison (piano), and Denny Inzer (bass).

Dick and Anne Albin - Cynic Overlook

1. Uncle Watt's Original Fantascinatin' Roadside Stand
2. The Rovin' Fiddler
3. Richard and Richard and John and John and Me
4. Beech Branch Run
5. Hometown
6. Customs and All That Snuff
7. Back in Frankie Avalon's Day
8. Bittersweet Woman
9. Who's That Smokin'
10. Stranger Danger
11. Back to West Virginia
12. Big Boys
13. Too Many Last Times
14. Sweet Music

Monday, July 14, 2014

Howdy Folks!

Recorded at the 33d-36th National Folk Festivals, Filene Center, Wolf Trap Farm Park, Vienna, Va., 1971-74.

"The first side of this album is devoted to the mainstream country music tradition...The second side is a sampling of some of the lesser-known types of traditional bands around the country, particularly dance bands."

Folks with better knowledge of the folk scene may be better acquainted with these artists than I am, though I do recognize Martin, Bogan & Armstrong (biography) from living in Knoxville, TN. This video may be from their performance at this festival:


This collection has lead me to search out further repetoire for the jaw harp. For example, The Austrian composer Johann Albrechtsberger - chiefly known today as a teacher of Beethoven - wrote four concerti (in F, Eb, E & D) for jaw harp between 1769 and 1771.

Medley of Irish Reels (John Wright)
Leather Britches (Highwoods String Band)
Lynchburg Town (Wade Mainer, Steve Ledford & Morris Bros.)
Fire on the Mountain (Kyle Creed, Fred Cockerham, Bobby Patterson)
Cabbage Head Song (Clint Howard, Fred Price)
Listen to the Mockingbird (Snuffy Jenkins, Pappy Sherrill)
Uncle Pen (Pinnacle Boys)
Arkansas Traveller (Sam Hinton)
Iko, Iko (Wild Magnolias)
Lady Be Good (Martin, Bogan & Armstrong)
Blackberry Quadrille (Louis Beaudoin)
Parlez-nous à Boire (Balfa Brothers)
Jambalaya (Louisiana Aces)
Decima (Ángel Luis Catala, Ernestine Reyes)
La Negra (Mariachi Tapatio)

National Folk Festival - Good Time Music Philo 1975.

Friday, July 04, 2014

July the Fourth Be With You

An "Officially Recognized Commemorative of the American Revolution Bicentennial Administration", this fairly short LP hits a few of the patriotic/nationalistic milestones, but also offers a bit of dissent with the populist "This Land is Your Land (incongruously sung by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir) and Burl Ives lending his pipes to "The Times They Are A-Changin'." Plus, there's Johnny Cash, which is never a bad thing.

America The Beautiful Columbia Special Products P12822

Side 1: 
OVERTURE TO "GEORGE M" - Original Cast
FROM SEA TO SHINING SEA - Percy Faith & His Orchestra
HOME ON THE RANGE - The Mormon Tabernacle Choir, Richard P. Condie, Conductor
THIS LAND IS YOUR LAND - The Philadelphia Orchestra, Eugene Ormandy, Conductor

Side 2:
BLESS THIS HOUSE - Mahalia Jackson
 ON THE TRAIL, from "GRAND CANYON SUITE" - The Philadelphia Orchestra, Eugene Ormandy, Conductor
 AMERICA, THERE'S SO MUCH TO SAY - The Johnny Mann Singers

Thursday, July 03, 2014

With a capital "B," and that rhymes with "P" and that stands for Blog!

If you know Meridith Wilson at all, it's likely from The Music Man, or from seeing his name as the writer of the Beatles' cover of "Till There Was You."
I guess you could call this a tie-in/cash-in. It's nicely recorded (Capitol Records having some nice studios available) and has most of the "greatest hits" that you would expect.

Meredith Wilson - Meredith Wilson's Marching Band

Side A
The Washington Post March
The Free Lance
Liberty Bell
Manhattan Beach
High School Cadets
Stars and Stripes Forever
Side B 
March to Freedom:
Colonel Bogey
Marching to Pretoria
Polonaise Millitaire
Yankee Doodle
Scotland To The Brave
Battle Hymn of the Republic
Piet Hein
British Grenadiers
Rakoczi March
The Freedom Song