News on Vanguard Folk, Motorhead, Sense Field
Heralded folk label Vanguard has assembled a three-disc compilation that traces the growth of the genre, from its roots in protest songs of the Depression and through the popular revival of folk, jug band, and blues music. Due Aug. 13, "Vanguard: Roots of Folk" features archive studio recordings from the cream of the label's roster as well as vintage performances from the Newport (R.I.) Folk Festival, which the label had the exclusive rights to record from 1959 through 1965.
Disc one boasts such early folk anthems as Paul Robeson's "Joe Hill" to Cisco Houston's recording of Woody Guthrie's "This Land Is Your Land" and Judy Collins' performance of "Turn, Turn, Turn." The second disc features artists who popularized folk throughout the 1960s, such as Buffy Saint-Marie ("Universal Solider"), Phil Ochs ("I Ain't Marching Anymore"), and the Chambers Brothers ("People Get Ready"). The collection's final disc spotlights artists of the blues revival, such as Mississippi John Hurt, Skip James, Sonny Terry, Brownie McGhee, Dave Van Ronk, John Hammond, Muddy Waters, John Lee Hooker, and Lightnin' Hopkins.
Due out that same day is the Vanguard Sessions Series compilation "Earl Scruggs, Classic Bluegrass Live 1959-1966," compiled from the banjo virtuoso's appearances at the Newport Folk Festival in 1959 with Hylo Brown and the Timberliners, and 1960 and 1966 with Lester Flatt and the Foggy Mountain Boys. Along with such favorites as "Wabash Cannonball" and "John Henry," the 18-track set also boasts never-before released recordings of "Girl in the Blue Velvet Band" and "Love and Wealth."
-- Barry A. Jeckell, N.Y.