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Gennett Old Time Music: Classic Country Recordings 1927-1934
"In the 1920s and 1930s, Gennett may have been small in comparison to labels like Victor and Columbia but they recorded some of the most important slices of American music. Although their catalogue is best known for jazz, they also recorded many rural performers and string bands. Here are some of the rarest and best. Gennett were ahead of the game. Just three months after Victor had an initial session with Robertson and Gilliland, they themselves had fiddle player William B. Houchins cut three sides. Then they recorded John D. Foster a month before Jimmy Rodgers' debut for the Victor label. Foster was not a `singing brakeman' or a `blue yodeller', but he was nonetheless a fine vocalist and guitar player whose recording career would continue after Rodger's death. On this anthology we feature nineteen of Foster's best recordings. Also featured are sizeable helpings of fine talents like Ernest Stoneman, the Red Fox Chasers, Fiddlin' Doc Roberts and Da Costa Woltz's Southern Broadcasters among many others. This is genuine `country' music, performed by artists who had first-hand experience of the triumphs and troubles they describe - a far cry, arguably, from the sounds of today. But most important, this was music that was designed to help hard-pressed folks to forget their cares for an hour or two. Even if it doesn't have you leaping up with a hoot and a holler, you'll find your feet tapping along."