Five Stars. Groundbreaking. "Fans of Nick Tosches' Where Dead Voices Gather will lap up this extraordinary snapshot of an America that is still shrouded in shadow. Good For What Ails You supplants the Harry Smith collections by surveying the people's music of the day, some of which sounds like nothing you have heard before." Jon Savage - MOJO Dec 2005
Before motion pictures, before radio, before television, the traveling Medicine Shows brought entertainment to America! Flamboyant pitch doctors roamed the land, hawking their tonics, elixirs, and miracle cures, and with them came a host of singers, dancers, comedians, banjo pickers, blues shouters, jug blowers, string ticklers, and minstrel men. The shows died out by mid-20th century, but not before a handful of seasoned veterans left their musical legacy on phonograph records. Here are classic performances by such colorful names as Pink Anderson, Daddy Stovepipe, Gid Tanner, Blind Sammie, Bogus Ben Covington, Fiddlin' John Carson, Banjo Joe, Shorty Godwin, Beans Hambone, Emmett Miller & His Georgia Crackers, the Three Tobacco Tags, and many more!
Two-CD Set / 48 Songs Digitally Remastered / Over 2 Hours of Music / Six-Panel Digipak with 72-page Full Color Booklet
A Profusely Illustrated History of the Medicine Shows, many Rare Photographs and Firsthand Accounts never before published, plus full discography and song descriptions.
A Sonic Tonic: One of the fall's more curious and enlightening CD sets comes from acclaimed reissue label Old Hat. -- Todd Martens - Billboard/Reuters 15 Oct 2005
Annual Critics' Poll of the year's best records: Good For What Ails You # 16 -- Top 20 Reissues of 2005 - No Depression (TN) Jan/Feb 2006
As academia continues to pry open American show business' minstrel past, Ails is a fascinating illustration of its musical appeal. -- Michaelangelo Matos - Seattle (WA) Weekly 30 Nov 2005
Fans of Harry Smith's Anthology of American Folk Music may well find that this one is even wilder. -- Steve Leggett - All Music Guide Nov 2005
Good For What Ails You is just amazing - expansive, odd, moving, confusing, glorious. -- Greil Marcus - author The Old, Weird America Oct 2005
Listening, one can almost smell the Kickapoo Indian Salve. Pitches may have been purest snake oil, but music still delights. -- Chris Morris - Hollywood Reporter/Reuters 29 Dec 2005
Rare tracks from the heyday of the snake oil vendors. Weird folk and blackface balladry for Harry Smith Anthology addict. -- Top 10 Reissue of the Year - MOJO Jan 2006