ACW songs performed by a Canadian-English duo, based on old sheet music

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A. Roy

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Sep 2, 2019
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Raleigh, North Carolina
Today I ran across this 11-minute performance by Patricia Hammond (vocalist) and Matt Redman (banjo and guitarist) of American Civil War songs. Hammond says she started collecting Civil War sheet music at the age of nine. I think what they're trying to do here is reproduce popular songs of the era as they might have been performed at an event or social gathering.

Included at the end is a touching rendition of "Just Before the Battle, Mother."


Roy B.
 

JPChurch

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Dec 30, 2016
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Manassas VA
I really enjoyed that!!! Thanks for sharing. The Smithsonian Institution published several LP's on the "Nonesuch" label decades ago. All instruments used were artifacts from the Museum's collection. I have one LP of Foster's parlor songs titled "Songs by Stephen Foster." The mezzo-soprano vocalist is top notch. She doesn't miss a note. Really neat to hear the old pianos and pump melodion organs. I don't know if this can still be found on all the streaming music services or not. I never copied it onto cassette tape. They say vinyl is all the rage now. The copyright date on my album sleeve is 1972. It has a "Waxie Maxies" sticker on it. I purchased it in 1976 IIRC. It still sounds absolutely fantastic. Not bad for a "bargain bin" LP.
 
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byron ed

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Mar 22, 2017
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Midwest
Commendable effort, well done, great sound. The performance is not authentic in detail, but imho the music being played and sung so beautifully overrides the technical aberration.

In detail, the instruments used here are both later post-war instrument types.*



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* In Antebellum / CW times standard ("spanish") guitars were much smaller in body size and strung with gut strings. At least the nylon strings here are an approximation of a gut string sound. Banjos were also gut-stringed and typically had no frets, and were played minstrel stroke-style more often than finger style; but at least the finger style used here on this fretted steel-string banjo approximates that style, if not the sound so much.
 
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