02 June 2020

Bluegrass Country Soul de luxe box set issued

AMOS Perine, in an article posted on the No Depression website on 19 May, asks: 'Was 1973 the greatest year for roots music?' and answers 'yes'; artists mentioned in the article include many from the bluegrass field, and there are many vintage and recent photos of them, together with lists of influential 1973 albums.

Thanks to Albert Ihde (producer/ director) and Ellen Pasternack (executive director) for this special-edition reissue of the film Bluegrass country soul, which makes a strong case for 1971 as the crucial year for bluegrass music. The original film was shot at Carlton Haney’s 1971 Labor Day Weekend Bluegrass Music Festival in Camp Springs, NC.

Haney, who had produced the first multi-day bluegrass music event in 1965, put together in 1971 a lineup that featured many pioneers of the music in their prime (Earl Scruggs, Ralph Stanley, Chubby Wise, Jimmy Martin, the Osborne Brothers, J.D. Crowe, Mac Wiseman, the Country Gentlemen), along with many younger artists who were to become stars (Del McCoury, Ricky Skaggs, Sam Bush, Doyle Lawson, Tony Rice, and Keith Whitley).

The film was first released in 1972 and issued on DVD in 2006. This new, comprehensive, multi-media 'Golden Anniversary Legacy Edition' box set contains DVDs and CDs with fifty musical performances and many supplementary features - music from the festival that didn't get into the film, expert commentary plus a 168-page book, a documentary on the making of the film, and much more - the scope of what's provided is indicated in this feature by Richard Thompson on Bluegrass Today.

A share of the profits from this project will go to the IBMA Foundation’s Trust Fund.

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