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AIMER ET PERDRE-TO LOVE & LOSE Songs 1917-1934 (2CD)

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Tompkins Square (TSQ2653)

Joe & Cleoma Falcon, Ukrainska Selska Orchestra, Happy Hayseeds, Leo Soileau & Moise Robin, Carter Family, Pawla Humeniuka, Kandel's Orchestra, Franciszek Dukli Wijska Band, Dennis McGhee & Sady Courville, Michael Thomasa, Holatiky/Kuziany Orkiestra, Douglas Bellard & Kirby Riley, Emry Arthur, Stefana Shkimby, Broder Kapelle, Karola Stocha, Stoneman Family, Delin Guillory & Lewis Lafleur, Breaux Freres and more...

As a lover of vintage music, I anticipate the release of a Tompkins Square CD with the same energised curiosity and excitement I did with Yazoo and County LPs in the 60s and 70s. This label has provided some terrific music in the last few years with anthologies of old time music, rare gospel, Cajun and eastern European music.

This CD is an expression of joy, exuberance, sorrow and regret from obscure singers and treasured musicians performing songs of love and loss from the prairies of Louisiana, remote Ukrainian mountain villages, the Polish highlands, the hollers of North Carolina, the back streets of New Orleans and deep Mississippi.

The whole thing throbs with fine music from the bone-rattling twin fiddle Lemko tunes of Samuil Pilip and Jeho Lemkiwska, rasping bitter and haunting poetry from banjo picker Dock Boggs, howling wails of defeat from the accordion/fiddle masters Bartmon Montet and Joswell Dupuis and the tender waif-like song of regret from Blind Uncle Gaspard. Then there's the wild, hare-brained harmonies of Josef Barnged's five fiddle orchestra from the Polish village of Migroda, hardcore flat picking and slide guitar played by Lewis McDaniels and Walter Smith, the wheezin' and squeezin' of the Cajun two step by Amade Ardoin and Dennis McGhee, sprightly dance pieces from Ukrainian fiddler Michala Thomasa and Rabbit Brown's words of advice to young people: Never let the same bee sting you twice!

It's all thrilling, exhausting displays of terrific music discovered, collected and lovingly restored from original 78s by producer and engineer Christopher King who wrote the notes with full lyrics and translations, in the beautifully designed 56 page booklet. Christopher writes; "the purpose is not didactic nor scholarly in scope. Rather, the goal of this venture is to create a catalyst for musical and cultural transformation. We are providing an aperture through which the curious can enter and emerge either famished or full". I'm not sure how to translate that as this collection has left me happily full but definitely wanting more!

 

Review Date: March 2012

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