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4.7 out of 5 stars
Wildwood Flower
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Price:£4.39
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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
This Not Now compilation is attractively packaged and presents vintage music from the 20th century. Running time CD1,73 minutes and CD2,76 minutes. The Carter Family was a country music group that recorded between 1927 and 1956. The 50 recordings in this set date from 1927 through to 1941 and are among the most representative of their 300 plus output which were all steeped in Southern folklore and history. Songwriter credits and years of recording are given and the liner notes come from Michael Heatley. Sound quality which has been restored is crisp but retains the vintage feel. A must for collectors of the genre.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
Inspired by an account of AP Carter's quest to preserve the folk tradition of rural America in Amanda Petrusich's excellent book, It Still Moves, I determined it was time I sampled the delights of The Carter Family to a greater extent than I'd been able to on assorted TV programmes.

The first thing to say about this collection is that it's great value for money - fifty tracks for a few quid is amazing, especially as the music has been remastered to the point where it's not possible to hear the eight decades which separate us from the recording of some of them. The liner notes are brief but informative, telling the reader about how different artistes have adapted Carter's music for their own songs, amongst other things. Dylan is one such mentioned, but I also noticed that the tune to Motherless Children bore an uncanny resemblance to Gillian Welch's No One Knows My Name, and that Wildwood Flower itself formed the basis of Emmylou Harris's Carter-inspired track on All I Intended To Be.

Levon Helm's tribute, on his album Dirt Farmer, was to just sing Single Girl, Married Girl more or less straight.

Whilst to 21st Century ears the production is charmingly unsophisticated, the liner notes point out that Maybelle's guitar playing was, in its day, revolutionary, and in its own way one of the reasons The Carter Family have gone down in the annals, so it's worth a listen just for that.

Much more, however, this is an indispensable piece of Americana.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on 6 May 2010
Did you ever wonder where many of those great old country songs come from... this wonderful double CD set (an unbelievable bargain) contains 50 tracks by the first family of country music. The carter Family were one of the first major country acts and bridge the gap between Country and Folk. Their song collecting, revolutionary music (yes, revolutionary... white people using the guitar for melody... a WOMAN playing such a style of guitar)influenced generations to come: Hank Williams and Johnny Cash to name a few. Songs like "Wabash Cannonball", "Are You Lonesome Tonight" (yes, it existed waaaay before Elvis) and, of course, "Wildwood Flower" are still standards of Country singers today. However, a word of warning to those who think Country begins and ends with taylor Swift (lovely tho' she is), these tracks are not high-tec, polished pop tunes. This is old "Old Time" and can get a bit repetitive in the tune department. Perhaps the only minus is that the famous "Will the Circle be Unbroken" isn't present, but with 50 other songs to listen too, maybe I'm just a little greedy to expect it all.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 17 February 2010
This double CD provides a manageable introduction to the large amount of material recorded by the original Carter Family. The Carter Family may suffer from their asociation with Country music, but this is beautiful folk music of interest to anyone interested in the folk or roots genres. Highly recommended - especially for the price.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on 14 April 2010
The music is wonderful and timeless - what I have heard of it at least.

But the production is faulty somewhere along the line - for me at least.

No one else reviewing this seems to have suffered the same problem I have encountered.

I have two cds labelled Disc 1 and 2 but BOTH cds contain the tracks listed for Disc 2.

I have emailed Amazon to let them know about the problem.
I am waiting to see how soon they will rectify the problem.

Meanwhile, I am eagerly waiting to hear the tracks on Disc 1....from 8,000 kms away...

UPDATE :
I have upgraded my rating to 4 stars : for Amazon's admirably swift service in sending me Wildwood Flower again, this time with the correct discs within a day of my emailing them about the above problem.
It would be 5 stars for the wonderful, compelling music : were it not for the fact that the track listings on the discs DO NOT MATCH the (CORRECT) track listings on the back of the album cover.
I have had to spend about a hour sorting this out and correcting the track listings on my computer.
I can't understand why this problem was not picked up and rectified earlier by NOT NOW.
Am I the only customer who has experienced this problem - or noticed it???

FIVE STARS FOR THE MUSIC ITSELF AND THE VALUE THIS ALBUM PROVIDES.
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on 1 December 2011
I've been playing this wonderful C.D. every day since it arrived earlier this week. The vocals are simply beautiful with some lovely harmonies and simple accoustic guitar chords in support. I had heard of the Carter Family previously, and was certainly aware of their importance in the context of traditional American music, but it wasn't until I came across a documentary about them literally only last week on the 'P.B.S.' tv channel, that I thought to myself "I really must obtain a C.D. of these beautiful songs." And a double C.D. of fifty tracks plus postage and packing for less than four pounds is fantastic value to me! Although I have to say I personally tend to prefer a not so clean, kind of period-crackley, (sorry but I don't know the correct technical audio term!) L.P. record sound with music from this sort of period, I'm nevertheless extremely impressed with the quality of the digital reproduction. So I'd have no hesitation in recommending this C.D. to anyone who likes the sound of this kind of southern U.S. traditional music, but has not yet actually taken the plunge and bought any of it. I guarantee that you won't be disappointed. I'm sorry that I can't be very specific on here but I just simply love every track. Now that is very unsual for me indeed, but it really is that enjoyable a C.D. Yes sir-ee!
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on 28 August 2014
As lots of the songs they sang have become classics and have gone through the "folk" process by other singers it is great to hear what they originally sounded like. The Carter guitar style is unusual in the sense of melody being played more on the bass strings than the treble which tends to be the norm now. I have really enjoyed the double disk and if you have any interest in early american folk songs and singers it is worth getting.
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on 22 November 2013
I wasn't sure what I was buying when I purchased this CD, I like vintage American music so I was pleasantly surprised when I first heard it. definitely good value with 50 tracks. when you realise that the Carter Family have been playing country music from the 1920's to 1950's . It's plane to a see that quite a few of todays singers must have been influenced by this group. this is my first CD of the Carter Family but it won't be my last
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on 28 March 2011
The Carter family are really interesting. From the early days of recording, the lure of $50 got a really eclectic mix of songs down, giving an insight into the 'at home' repertoire of the family. There's hard-core folk, hymns, country gospel, sentimental drawing-room ballads, and plenty of stuff collected, adapted, written or nicked by AP (maybe the distinction's not so big as we like to think). It's all interesting even where time has not been good to it. And all given added pizzaz by fabulous natural-voice vocals, sometimes great harmonies, and the characteristic and influential guitar of Maybelle Carter. And it's not all Carter Scratch - there's a bit of bottle-neck in there too. You get a view of their wide range of influences and the traffic between black and white music.

To my way of thinking, the 2nd CD is pretty disposable, with too much sentimental commercial stuff. And some odd omissions. So check out the selection on Can the Circle be Unbroken. But for £2.99, that's a 'wow' from me.
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on 12 June 2014
It's not every day you hear a sound like this .Brilliant , I admit that I'm a dinosaur and love the nostalgic fifties but The Carters took me back even further. I will be finding out more about them. Tom D
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