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39 of 40 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful, exhilarating - still definitely Springsteen and yet very different
This is a fantastic album of old folk standards given a faithful rendition from Springsteen the devotee but with that distinctive Springsteen treatment as well, and it works a treat on every single track.

If you don't like folk music - it's all fiddles and banjos (a friend described it as "a bit lumberjack-y"!) - you won't enjoy it, but there is a zest and joy...
Published on 7 April 2007 by G. Dietz

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1 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good - but not Great
Like many albums I bought this one on the basis of one track- the beautiful and haunting Shenendoah. Like many albums, I found myself slightly disappointed with the others. They are a fine collection of folk based American songs that Springsteen does very well with excellent accompaniment, but they don't really stir you although, maybe they raise a slight smile. I suspect...
Published on 11 Mar 2011 by Captain Sensible


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39 of 40 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful, exhilarating - still definitely Springsteen and yet very different, 7 April 2007
By 
G. Dietz "gza" (Durham, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: We Shall Overcome - The Seeger Sessions / American Land Edition [CD+DVD] (Audio CD)
This is a fantastic album of old folk standards given a faithful rendition from Springsteen the devotee but with that distinctive Springsteen treatment as well, and it works a treat on every single track.

If you don't like folk music - it's all fiddles and banjos (a friend described it as "a bit lumberjack-y"!) - you won't enjoy it, but there is a zest and joy to these songs that is exhilarating.

It comes from the spirit of the old songs themselves, Springsteen's infectious enthusiasm and passion, and from the genuinely improvised vibe of the performances: you hear the man himself instruct the musicians on whose solo he'd like next, and you can watch him do so on the accompanying DVD. (For a non-musician music fan like myself, eeing how the songs were arranged on the DVD was instructive, and fascinating.)

But for me the real thrills come from the brass section that adds a fabulous extra layer and flavour. According to reviews I've read, Springsteen was astute and knowledgeable enough to notice that when Pete Seeger was living and playing his folk music in New York in the 1920s and 1930s that big-band jazz would have been playing in venues nearby, and so he added trumpet and trombones to the fiddles, banjos, mandolin and honky-tonk piano. The blend is magical. When they blow hard for the first time on, for example, "Jacob's Ladder" - heralded with big cymbal crashes - the hairs on the back of my neck stand up, every time. The result is a fabulous hybrid big band/folk knees-up.

There isn't a duff track on the CD, and the extra DVD of the recording sessions is great. Plus, buy this version, as you get 5 extra tracks and some live concert footage that isn't on the original release (why, I don't know - was Springsteen himself in on this rip-off? I hope not.) One of these extra tracks is an old Vietnam protest song updated for the Iraq war called "Bring 'em home" (i.e. 'our' boys and girls in the armed forces). Unfortunately, neither of Springsteen's two specially written new verses explain how this policy will help the poor, innocent Iraqis caught up in the politicians "testing their grand theories"...

Tremendous stuff. They don't make 'em like this anymore. Trust Springsteen to breathe new life into old songs.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A very satisfying non-E Street Bruce product, 28 July 2007
By 
This review is from: We Shall Overcome - The Seeger Sessions / American Land Edition [CD+DVD] (Audio CD)
After about the fifth person has come to me recently saying "I'm not a Springsteen fan at all, but I really like that Seeger thing" it tells you all you need to know. When I heard the rumours before it was released - folk album, Pete Seeger, banjo's, recorded on his ranch....it was quite depressing....until you put the record on.

Its not often you can put a Bruce CD on at a party either. I tried it the other day and there was a room full of tapping feet.

Top quality stuff!
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Seeger sessions, 5 Sep 2007
By 
Spider Monkey (UK) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: We Shall Overcome - The Seeger Sessions / American Land Edition [CD+DVD] (Audio CD)
This is such a good album. You cannot help but tap your feet along with each song and come off finishing the album with a big grin on your face It is good, simple, fun music. I love that you can hear the songs actually being performed and developing rather than a sterile studio album and it seems pretty obvious that a lot of fun was had making this music. The DVD is great to watch to soak up the atmosphere the music was played in and to see the group interaction. Bruce seems to be getting better and better and this is no exception.

Feel free to check out my blog which can be found on my profile page.
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28 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sheer joy, 16 Dec 2006
By 
This review is from: We Shall Overcome - The Seeger Sessions / American Land Edition [CD+DVD] (Audio CD)
This is rated as 5 stars only because I cannot award it more - the album is a sheer joy to listen to. I knew nothing about it until I was taken to the recent Wembley gig - (question - "would you like to go to Springsteen" - answer "yes" - but not knowing at all what I was expecting!) - the concert was about the most fun one I have ever been to - Bruce and his band were clearly have a whale of a time and that was echoed by the audience. I came away with the songs (especially Pay Me My Money Down and Erie Canal) running through my head - promptly got on the PC and ordered the album - it's hardly been off the player since. Do go for this version - you get 5 extra tracks which are well worth it - and an extended DVD. Several friends are getting this for Christmas!

Only complaint - bad packaging - the cardboard has already begun to tear - looks good but is impractical for an album you will want to play over and over and over.

Go and buy NOW!!!!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just Happy Music., 25 Nov 2010
This review is from: We Shall Overcome - The Seeger Sessions / American Land Edition [CD+DVD] (Audio CD)
Previously didnt much care for Springsteen or Seeger but the happiness in the recording studio is infectious,no doubt fuelled by copious spirits and beer,In their entirety the sessions bounce along and everyone is happy My wife doesnt normally share my choice of music but I noticed her toes tapping to the beat,Must be good.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another outstanding album, 10 Feb 2007
By 
Spider Monkey (UK) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This is such a good album, with even more extras on offer on the second disc. You cannot help but tap your feet along with each song and come off finishing the album with a big grin on your face It is good, simple, fun music. I love that you can hear the songs actually being performed and developing rather than a sterile studio album and it seems pretty obvious that a lot of fun was had making this music. The DVD is great to watch to soak up the atmosphere the music was played in and to see the group interaction. Bruce seems to be getting better and better and this is no exception.

Feel free to check out my blog which can be found on my profile page.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sometimes a change is a VERY good thing, 14 Nov 2006
By 
This review is from: We Shall Overcome - The Seeger Sessions / American Land Edition [CD+DVD] (Audio CD)
I get the feeling that this collection isn't going to satisfy every Springsteen fans taste, but as a sometimes-fan, I think it's the most electrifying thing he's done for ages. I'm not a huge country fan or an avid folksy, but the Boss hit's the musical funny bone with this one. It's a carnival of footstompin' fun which effortlessly whistles and hoots it's way past the heights which the last few albums have failed to reach. This isn't Nebraska; this is the best damn album of the year!
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent!, 5 Jan 2007
By 
Chetan Gohil (London, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: We Shall Overcome - The Seeger Sessions / American Land Edition [CD+DVD] (Audio CD)
Got the CD and just can't stop listening to it as it has that folk music touch to it. Something different to the norm with the album as am more of a rock person but this album has got me. All songs are brilliant to listen to esp. Mrs. McGrath which is about this woman who awaits her son who has gone to war. Excellent song and well composed with good musical notes.

If you are a fan of Bruce, this is something different. Not really rock nor any other stuff that he has done before. But an excellent material that will get you singing along if you like to listen to the odd folk songs now and then.

I give it 5 star!!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars ONLY FANTASTIC, 27 July 2012
This review is from: We Shall Overcome - The Seeger Sessions / American Land Edition [CD+DVD] (Audio CD)
I bought this one on the basis of one track- the beautiful Shenendoah.
But I have to say its a Fantastic album.I am not a great fan of Bruce Springsteen but this cd really amazed me.
Bought it to a party last night and everybody wanted it.payed 12.50 on ebay for it plus a 1 postage. should have gone to specsavers and checked Amazon First.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just fabulous!, 11 July 2012
By 
J. Duncan (Sunderland, UK) - See all my reviews
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Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: We Shall Overcome - The Seeger Sessions / American Land Edition [CD+DVD] (Audio CD)
This arrived last week and is now absolutely officially my very favourite album! Purchased for 'Erie Canal' and 'Mary don't you weep' but the entire collection is a footstompin' hootanenny of American folk tunes which get into your brain and then refuse to leave! 'Jacob's ladder' and the title track stand out especially. Fabulous footage of the recording of the album on the accompanying DVD as well: it looks as much fun as it sounds. Springsteen as you'd least expect him, perhaps, but at his brilliant best! BUY IT!!
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