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SORROW COME PASS ME AROUND - A SURVEY OF RURAL BLACK RELIGIOUS MUSIC

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Dust-To-Digital (DTD31)

When released on vinyl a few months back, this generated a significant amount of customer interest, not least from the many who wanted to enjoy its delights "but can we have it on CD instead?"

Well, here we are, problem solved and well worth the wait it is. A document of black religious music that consciously endeavours to demonstrate that such music wasn't just confined to congressional singing at a church service but existed as a part of the daily lives of individuals in their wider communities.

Outside of the compilers intent, this to me simply stands as it is as a startling document of religious music from blues singers in the southern states in the late 1960s and early 1970s. It gathers together little known field recordings of renowned blues scholar David Evans, both alone and in collaboration variously with John Fahey, Al Wilson, George Mitchell, Bill Koon, Cheryl Thurber and Marina Bokelman.

What we are left with is simply spine-chilling music, encompassing fife and drums bands, acapella singers, bottleneck and finger-picking guitarists and more besides, featuring well-known and relatively well-known artists Furry Lewis, Napoleon Strickland, Babe Stovall, Eddie Lee Jones, Blind Pete Burrell alongside lesser knowns, but equally splendid nonetheless.

If you have still to be persuaded, I would suggest that if you enjoyed the recent re-issue of Mississippi Fred McDowell's Amazing Grace album (FLOATD6187) or the 2CD and book set Drop On Down In Florida (DTD24), then you can buy this with confidence.

So, a superb 16 track CD in a lovely digi-pack with great  notes in a 32 page booklet, or the vinyl LP version, only £19.99 plus p&p (ask for PT-3001)? It does matter which you choose, but get one!

Review Date: October 2013

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