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The Unbroken Circle - The Musical Heritage Of The Carter Family

By VARIOUS ARTISTS (Artist) & Carter Family (Artist)
Our Price $ 13.58  
Retail Value $ 15.98  
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Item Number 57230  
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Item Specifications...

Record Label   Dualtone Music Group
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 5.55" Width: 4.97" Height: 0.54"
Weight:   0.18 lbs.
Binding  CD
Release Date   Aug 1, 2004
ISBN  5558917032  
EAN  0803020116221  
UPC  803020116221  

Availability  0 units.

Track Names
1.  Worried Man Blues - George Jones
2.  No Depression In Heaven - Sheryl Crow
3.  On The Sea Of Galilee - Emmylou Harris with t
4.  Engine One-Forty-Three - Johnny Cash
5.  Never Let The Devil Get The Upper Hand Of You
6.  Little Moses - Joe and Janette Carter
7.  Black Jack David - Norman and Nancy Blake wit
8.  Bear Creek Blues - John Prine
9.  You Are My Flower - Willie Nelson
10.  Single Girl, Married Girl - Shawn Colvin with
11.  Will My Mother Know Me There? - The Whites wi
12.  The Winding Stream - Rosanne Cash
13.  Rambling Boy - The Del McCoury Band
14.  Hold Fast To The Right - June Carter Cash
15.  Gold Watch & Chain - The Nitty Gritty Dirt Ba

Item Description...
The title of this tribute to the Carter Family alludes to their best-known spiritual, "Will the Circle Be Unbroken." While that standard isn't included here, the roster of artists renews the spirit of the circle, a familial legacy that encompasses Mother Maybelle's daughter June Carter Cash, June's husband Johnny Cash, Johnny's daughter Rosanne Cash, and generations of artists inspired by them. Highlights range from the yelp of George Jones on "Worried Man Blues" to the surge of rockabilly energy in John Prine's "Bear Creek Blues" to the banjo-driven, fiddle-tinged bluegrass of the Del McCoury Band's "Rambling Boy." As for the family's performances, Rosanne brings a depth of expression to "The Winding Stream" while a sense of mortality pervades Johnny's "Engine One-Forty-Three" and June's "Hold Fast to the Right." And Willie Nelson's solo reading of "You Are My Flower" gives it room to bloom. Album producer John Carter Cash (son of Johnny and June, grandson of Maybelle) makes every one of these tracks feel like family. --Don McLeese

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
Wonderful tribute album  Sep 5, 2005
The original Carter family began recording in the 1920's and continued into the 1940's with a brand of music that has influenced many country and folk singers of subsequent generations. Not only that, but the family has itself produced some notable singers such as June Carter (daughter of Maybelle, who sings Hold fast to the right) and Carlene Carter (daughter of June but not featured here). Janette and Joe Carter (daughter and son of Sara and A P Carter) sing here on Little Moses.

This tribute album largely avoids the most famous Carter family songs so you won't find Wabash Cannonball (recorded seven years before Roy Acuff's even more famous version), I'm thinking tonight of my blue eyes (the tune of which has been used for Great speckled bird, Wild side of life and It wasn't God who made honky tonk angels), Keep on the sunny side, Homestead on the farm a.k.a. I wonder how the old folks are at home, Will the circle be unbroken, Jimmy Brown the newsboy, Little darling pal of mine, Lonesome valley, Foggy mountain top and Wildwood flower.

Without any of those classics, the best-known songs here may be Worried man blues (covered here by George Jones), You are my flower (covered here by Willie Nelson) and Gold watch and chain (covered here by Kris Kristofferson and the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band - Emmylou included this song on her bluegrass album, Roses in the snow). You should also recognize the tune to Bear Creek blues (here sung by John Prine) as it is the same as Orange Blossom Special.

In poor health, Johnny Cash (whose sixties recording of Orange Blossom Special is the most famous recording of that song) clearly struggled to sing Engine 143 yet the song works well in the circumstances. At the other end of the age spectrum are the Peasall sisters, who have previously appeared on the O brother soundtrack. Her, they join Emmylou for a fine rendition of On the sea of Galilee.

Sheryl Crow (No depression) and Shawn Colvin (Single girl married girl) represent the contemporary music scene well. The other excellent tracks here are Never let the devil get the upper hand of you (Marty Stuart), Black Jack David (Nancy and Norma Blake with Tim O'Brien), Will my mother know me there (The Whites with Ricky Skaggs), The winding stream (Rosanne Cash) and Rambling boy (Del McCoury Band).

My copy of this album is a limited edition that includes a bonus sampler CD. Two of the tracks on that CD are covers of famous Carter family songs. While I appreciate the effort taken to record obscure songs, those two tracks reinforce my belief that this would have been an even better album if two or three famous songs from my earlier list had been included. Still, this album is not - and was never intended to be - a substitute for a collection of the original family's recordings.

If you enjoy traditional folk-country music, you'll surely love this album. You might also enjoy another Carter family tribute that I reviewed a long time ago by Ginny Hawker and Kay Justice, simply titled Bristol.
Carter Family  Jul 23, 2005
I now have all three of the Carter family CD's and they are great!
I am a big fan of roots music. This album is a beautiful, captivating record that consistently delivers great music, song after song. If you enjoy this album and are looking for some similar great roots albums then I recommend the following:
1) Appalachian Stomp: Bluegrass Classics
2) Ain't No Grave: A Tribute To Traditional And Public Domain Songs
3) March 16-20 by Uncle Tupelo
4) Beautiful Dreamer: The Songs Of Stephen Foster
5) Every Sound Below by Tim Eriksen
A play on words that plays!   Jan 7, 2005
If you like Carter Family music and want current performers this is a good choice. The nice thing is that John Carter Cash keeps the music true to the roots. This is something A.P. could have done and would like. Very well done and something worth having
The Carter Family Revisited  Dec 19, 2004
John Carter Cash, the son of June Carter and Johnny Cash, has produced here a fitting tribute to the original Carter family. First he has managed to select some of the less often recorded songs and has gathered an interesting, talented group of entertainers to pick and sing these A. P. Carter numbers. Additionally he has written a thoughtful, insightful introduction on the relevance and influence of the Carter Family on bluegrass/folk/country music, whatever you choose to call it. There are some really beautiful numbers here. It's difficult to pick a favorite from so many. Emmylou Harris' rendition of "On The Sea of Galilee" with Randy Scruggs' acoustic guitar sounding so much like Maybelle Carter's style, however, is as good as this kind of music gets. Willie Nelson accompanies himself on guitar in a soulful "You Are My Flower" reminiscent of his "Blue Eyes Crying In The Rain," that was such a big hit years ago. Janette and Joe Carter's (A. P. and Sara's children) arrangement of "Little Moses" complete with Janette's lacy autoharp playing is quite beautiful. These two singers are almost in a time warp and have a sound closer to the original Carter family than anyone else on this CD. "Gold Watch and Chain" by The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band and Kris Kristofferson rounds out my favorite four. The two cuts I like least are "Worried Man Blues" by George Jones and "Hold Fast To The Right" by June Carter Cash with vocal backup by her husband. Jones, whose velvety tenor voice I love appears to have pitched this one one key too high; June Carter, although she co-wrote a country classic, "Ring of Fire," and was a great comedienne, was never known for having a beautiful voice. Sad to say, here she basically sings off-key. Perhaps Mr. Cash should have selected another number by her since she does some much better A. P. Carter on her previous solo albums.

There are 15 selections here, certainly something for every bluegrass/Carter Family fan. Wouldn't it be a fine day for music if Emmylou Harris did an all A. P. Carter album, along with Dolly Parton and Linda Ronstadt!

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