Ken Burns' COUNTRY MUSIC Documentary

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...was just a category on today's Jeopardy, so let's anticipate/dread/debate whether we need this when we already have Cocaine & Rhinestones etc.

a bevy of supermodels, musicians and Lena Dunham (C. Grisso/McCain), Thursday, 12 September 2019 17:06 (eight months ago) link

camera pans over a daguerrotype of a hill billy

Seany's too Dyche to mention (jim in vancouver), Thursday, 12 September 2019 17:16 (eight months ago) link

I'm excited about it. But I don't listen to "podcasts"

alpine static, Thursday, 12 September 2019 17:19 (eight months ago) link

was there a thread to talk about American Epic? it was ok.

mfktz (Camaraderie at Arms Length), Thursday, 12 September 2019 17:20 (eight months ago) link

Final episode focuses entirely on how Wynton Marsalis' collaboration with Willie Nelson revitalized country music.

Montgomery Burns' Jazz (Tarfumes The Escape Goat), Thursday, 12 September 2019 17:20 (eight months ago) link

I wonder if they'll do like they did w/Fusion in the Jazz doc by being handwavy re:the importance of Byrds/Gram Parsons etc. and Country Rock.

a bevy of supermodels, musicians and Lena Dunham (C. Grisso/McCain), Thursday, 12 September 2019 17:26 (eight months ago) link

that's Rosanne Cash up there, no?

TikTok to the (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Thursday, 12 September 2019 17:35 (eight months ago) link

Yes.

a bevy of supermodels, musicians and Lena Dunham (C. Grisso/McCain), Thursday, 12 September 2019 17:39 (eight months ago) link

this seems so boringly obvious to me.

and when you can say that about a ken burns endeavour, hoo boy.

Totally different head. Totally. (Austin), Thursday, 12 September 2019 21:14 (eight months ago) link

was there a thread to talk about American Epic? it was ok.

They were showing some of these this afternoon as an undercard to Burns' premiere. Quite good! I really liked the Charley Patton segment.

a bevy of supermodels, musicians and Lena Dunham (C. Grisso/McCain), Sunday, 15 September 2019 20:45 (eight months ago) link

David Cantwell has a review:

newyorker.com/culture/culture-desk/ken-burns-delightful-country-music-gets-the-big-things-mostly-right

TikTok to the (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Sunday, 15 September 2019 21:10 (eight months ago) link

Bloody hell, WYNTON <is> in this!

a bevy of supermodels, musicians and Lena Dunham (C. Grisso/McCain), Monday, 16 September 2019 00:21 (eight months ago) link

It's pretty damn good so far

TikTok to the (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Monday, 16 September 2019 00:30 (eight months ago) link

Bloody hell, WYNTON <is> in this!

Every music documentary ever made in this millennium must have commentary by either Wynton or Bono/Redd’s Law

Our Borad Could Be Your Trife (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 16 September 2019 00:47 (eight months ago) link

Narrator sounds to be Peter Coyote.

Our Borad Could Be Your Trife (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 16 September 2019 00:52 (eight months ago) link

It is. He's Burns go-to for narration.

a bevy of supermodels, musicians and Lena Dunham (C. Grisso/McCain), Monday, 16 September 2019 02:00 (eight months ago) link

first ep was pretty good to me.

Josh in Chicago, Monday, 16 September 2019 02:34 (eight months ago) link

_billygoat testicles_

a bevy of supermodels, musicians and Lena Dunham (C. Grisso/McCain), Monday, 16 September 2019 02:38 (eight months ago) link

that part just played again. archived for posterity

Great opening ep.

a bevy of supermodels, musicians and Lena Dunham (C. Grisso/McCain), Monday, 16 September 2019 02:39 (eight months ago) link

and the rerun of American Epic beforehand was an inspired foreword.

a bevy of supermodels, musicians and Lena Dunham (C. Grisso/McCain), Monday, 16 September 2019 02:40 (eight months ago) link

"this seems so boringly obvious to me."

lol @ calling 99% of what's being covered in episode 1 "obvious."

Johnny Fever, Monday, 16 September 2019 03:29 (eight months ago) link

I could listen to that first a cappella bit with Dolly for hours.

Greta Van Show Feets BB (milo z), Monday, 16 September 2019 04:31 (eight months ago) link

otm

Squeaky Fromage (VegemiteGrrl), Monday, 16 September 2019 05:13 (eight months ago) link

how many episodes are there of this? man, Ep1 was a pretty deep dive.

alpine static, Monday, 16 September 2019 08:31 (eight months ago) link

Eight, I think

Our Borad Could Be Your Trife (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 16 September 2019 09:46 (eight months ago) link

They're showing four this week, and the other four next week (Sunday-->Wednesday each week).

a bevy of supermodels, musicians and Lena Dunham (C. Grisso/McCain), Monday, 16 September 2019 12:31 (eight months ago) link

All of the first 4 are already on the PBS app on Roku/FireTV/etc.

Johnny Fever, Monday, 16 September 2019 13:28 (eight months ago) link

oooh! that's good. i know people dunk on wynton and his inability to see beyond his own jazz glasses but the historical information in the jazz doc is very useful for educational purposes when students have no idea what jazz is or where it came from beyond what i've said. it confirms that teacher is not crazy. i am assuming the country music one is similar?

(i don't show them the whole thing, it's too long, but the chapters about the origins are great aside from the graphic imagery of lynchings and constant talk about prostitution -- which actually caused trouble in one of my classes but that is neither here nor there nor jazz nor country)

weird woman in a bar (La Lechera), Monday, 16 September 2019 18:09 (eight months ago) link

I guess I will watch the first ep of this but I am v v skeptical

Οὖτις, Monday, 16 September 2019 18:10 (eight months ago) link

It's good!

Does anyone actual listen to Wynton Marsalis? He's released maybe 100 or so records, but I don't think I've heard a note.

Josh in Chicago, Monday, 16 September 2019 18:13 (eight months ago) link

wasn't he involved in a recent movie about buddy bolden?

weird woman in a bar (La Lechera), Monday, 16 September 2019 18:20 (eight months ago) link

(of course it's buddy bolden)

weird woman in a bar (La Lechera), Monday, 16 September 2019 18:20 (eight months ago) link

i listen to marsalis / have seen him play live / have talked to him once or twice. he's phenomenally knowledgable about music but also quite opinionated. he's allowed to be!

Fuck the NRA (ulysses), Monday, 16 September 2019 18:22 (eight months ago) link

I figure he must have some sorta fanbase beyond those who might casually pick up a Jazz CD at Barnes & Noble. There's also those who might casually pick up a Jazz Christmas CD at Barnes & Noble. I haven't ever met a single Wynton fan, though.

(although a trumpeter acquaintance once told me and several other skeptics that one of Wynton's early records -- possibly his debut as a leader -- is "actually really good! Nobody believes me, but it's good!")

Montgomery Burns' Jazz (Tarfumes The Escape Goat), Monday, 16 September 2019 18:23 (eight months ago) link

Something I noticed re: Wynton's interview: At one point he makes a quick hand gesture revealing he's holding his trumpet in his right hand.

Might be surgically attached.

a bevy of supermodels, musicians and Lena Dunham (C. Grisso/McCain), Monday, 16 September 2019 18:26 (eight months ago) link

whats weird is i get him mixed up w George Winston & think he’s the barefoot piano guy

Squeaky Fromage (VegemiteGrrl), Monday, 16 September 2019 18:27 (eight months ago) link

Wynton is a really good live musician and bandleader and composer! His fans are very much of the "jazz as american classical" audience though and that puts a lot of folks off.

Fuck the NRA (ulysses), Monday, 16 September 2019 18:27 (eight months ago) link

Does anyone actual listen to Wynton Marsalis?

i have a chico freeman album from the early 80s with wynton on a couple tracks. i'll just mirror the cliche: he sounds like mid-60s miles. passable, but it must suck to have recorded as much music as he has and never once had a unique or dinstictive thing to say.

Totally different head. Totally. (Austin), Monday, 16 September 2019 18:30 (eight months ago) link

anyway I really enjoyed the first ep, impressed that they covered so much ground but still kept it interesting

loved Merle singing Mule skinner blues ... and Vince Gill demoing the Carter Scratch ...

and man gimme some of whatever Marty Stuart is taking/bathing in to still look so great

Squeaky Fromage (VegemiteGrrl), Monday, 16 September 2019 18:36 (eight months ago) link

this is admittedly not my area of expertise but this seems like a funny discussion about Wynton and whether or not he has actual fans. he's one of the most famous jazz musicians in the world!

alpine static, Monday, 16 September 2019 18:37 (eight months ago) link

wonder if they will gloss over the horrific story of spade cooley & how he got pardoned by reagan

weird woman in a bar (La Lechera), Monday, 16 September 2019 18:37 (eight months ago) link

it must suck to have recorded as much music as he has and never once had a unique or dinstictive thing to say.

It's one thing to be in your late teens and early 20s and talking shit about Miles Davis, because you've got your whole career ahead of you to prove and illustrate your point. But Wynton's pushing 60 now, and you have to wonder if he looks back on his career and regrets that he hasn't taken one single solitary risk in his musical life.

Montgomery Burns' Jazz (Tarfumes The Escape Goat), Monday, 16 September 2019 18:39 (eight months ago) link

xpost mmm yes wondering that myself
although by the same token i dont want a super detailed account because it’s so horrific

Squeaky Fromage (VegemiteGrrl), Monday, 16 September 2019 18:39 (eight months ago) link

i enjoyed last night's episode of the show but felt like it dragged a lot in the second half. i'm still "in" tho

also i think Marty Stuart is my favorite country artist ever

alpine static, Monday, 16 September 2019 18:40 (eight months ago) link

xp - yeah neither do i but i do want it to be acknowledged -- he was one of the most disgusting and horrible people i have ever heard of and he was pardoned by ronald mc donald reagan !!!!

weird woman in a bar (La Lechera), Monday, 16 September 2019 18:41 (eight months ago) link

I don't see any reason to make a big deal about the Reagan pardon, Cooley was dead already anyway.

I mean on the list of shitty things Reagan did it's kinda low

Οὖτις, Monday, 16 September 2019 18:43 (eight months ago) link

Cooley obviously a horrible monster who should've died in prison, but the parole board let him out (not Reagan) and then the dude died.

Οὖτις, Monday, 16 September 2019 18:43 (eight months ago) link

well i for one am glad he died

nevermind my digression. i plan to watch this ASAP.

weird woman in a bar (La Lechera), Monday, 16 September 2019 18:44 (eight months ago) link

Has there ever been a Jimmie Rodgers biopic?

a bevy of supermodels, musicians and Lena Dunham (C. Grisso/McCain), Monday, 16 September 2019 18:48 (eight months ago) link

The 1982 film Honkytonk Man, directed by and starring Clint Eastwood, was loosely based on Rodgers' life.

mfktz (Camaraderie at Arms Length), Monday, 16 September 2019 18:50 (eight months ago) link

Hm, there are Episode 8 Show Notes on HTT but no actual podcast that I can see.

Beware of Mr. Blecch, er...what? (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 7 October 2019 11:43 (seven months ago) link

yeah i’m wondering if they somehow forgot to post 8

Squeaky Fromage (VegemiteGrrl), Monday, 7 October 2019 13:13 (seven months ago) link

Maybe it’s a sly tribute to No Show Jones.

Beware of Mr. Blecch, er...what? (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 7 October 2019 13:18 (seven months ago) link

i do want to read Guralnick’s Lost Highways now though

At least Charlie Rich is in it.

Let them eat Pfifferlinge an Schneckensauce (Tom D.), Monday, 7 October 2019 13:29 (seven months ago) link

Exactly. That’s how we knew he wasn’t just a journeyman.

Beware of Mr. Blecch, er...what? (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 7 October 2019 13:41 (seven months ago) link

Well good evening,
Don’t that sun look good going down

Beware of Mr. Blecch, er...what? (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 7 October 2019 23:35 (seven months ago) link

I’m having withdrawal symptoms from/flashbacks to this. Right now hearing a mashup of “The Streets of Bakersfield” and “Delia’s Gone” in my head.

Beware of Mr. Blecch, er...what? (James Redd and the Blecchs), Tuesday, 8 October 2019 01:00 (seven months ago) link

What these two songs have in common is that they were re-recorded by the artists decades later and finally became hits of a sort. Wondering what other songs from major country artists fit this bill.

Beware of Mr. Blecch, er...what? (James Redd and the Blecchs), Tuesday, 8 October 2019 01:05 (seven months ago) link

Wow, Wikipedia says there have been tons of recordings by folk and country artists of “Delia” songs and that Johnny Cash alone recorded it four times.

Beware of Mr. Blecch, er...what? (James Redd and the Blecchs), Tuesday, 8 October 2019 01:07 (seven months ago) link

Also is that a body double for Flaco Jiménez in the background of the video for “The Streets of Bakersfield”?

Beware of Mr. Blecch, er...what? (James Redd and the Blecchs), Tuesday, 8 October 2019 01:10 (seven months ago) link

we dug up the BBC Lost Highways series on youtube and have started watching tonight. Charlie Louvin! <3

Squeaky Fromage (VegemiteGrrl), Tuesday, 8 October 2019 03:49 (seven months ago) link

Wow, Ray Price gets an episode too.

Beware of Mr. Blecch, er...what? (James Redd and the Blecchs), Tuesday, 8 October 2019 04:18 (seven months ago) link

Buck AND his producer!

Squeaky Fromage (VegemiteGrrl), Tuesday, 8 October 2019 05:19 (seven months ago) link

Random fact that just popped into my head: believe “Ring of Fire” was first recorded by one of the other Carter sisters- Anita, I think- before Johnny had the idea to cut it with mariachi horns.

Beware of Mr. Blecch, er...what? (James Redd and the Blecchs), Tuesday, 8 October 2019 12:15 (seven months ago) link

still reeling over some of these Lost Highways interviews - episode 2 interviews with Ray Price & Eddy Arnold <3

Squeaky Fromage (VegemiteGrrl), Wednesday, 9 October 2019 05:33 (seven months ago) link

the one thing i don’t like about Lost Highways over Ken Burns is that it picks sides in a narrative way too heavily, ie Audrey drove Hank to drink; Ray Price is the “judas” of country for doing Danny Boy, etc

like sure it’s conventional wisdom of the time but as a storyteller you should try to do a little better than wallowing in the muck with everyone else.

idk. i think Burns has a lighter touch and allows for more context to tell a richer story, even when he leaves stuff out that we would want to see. i mean he has his glib moments too but they don’t feel as harsh
as some of these

Squeaky Fromage (VegemiteGrrl), Wednesday, 9 October 2019 05:39 (seven months ago) link

Just got busted by a neighbor whilst walking home and singing along to “The Streets of Baltimore.”

Beware of Mr. Blecch, er...what? (James Redd and the Blecchs), Saturday, 12 October 2019 00:56 (seven months ago) link

breaking news update direct from the source (i coildnt take the suspense so i emailed the pod)

Holding Things Together episode 8 could hit yr feed Sunday (maybe)

quoting Don: “I’ve been traveling and traveling. Hope to get to it on Sunday. I’m actually in Nashville right now for Dolly’s 50th Opry Anniversary show so I’m keeping it country.” 🤠

Squeaky Fromage (VegemiteGrrl), Saturday, 12 October 2019 01:47 (seven months ago) link

Thanks. I have this far resisted using that email, but may do so soon.

Beware of Mr. Blecch, er...what? (James Redd and the Blecchs), Saturday, 12 October 2019 01:51 (seven months ago) link

i hope they continue it in some other form after the final ep. i really enjoy their convos & have learned so much!

Squeaky Fromage (VegemiteGrrl), Saturday, 12 October 2019 02:05 (seven months ago) link

Assuming you told them that in the email.

Beware of Mr. Blecch, er...what? (James Redd and the Blecchs), Saturday, 12 October 2019 02:06 (seven months ago) link

i wrote an itunes review for that :)

Squeaky Fromage (VegemiteGrrl), Saturday, 12 October 2019 02:35 (seven months ago) link

Leafing through the tie-in book, which does indeed have incredible photos and more details, more stories. Carlene Carter’s dad, Carl Smith, is discussed and there is even a photo of him and June. Random thing I never knew: the Patti Page hit version of “The Tennessee Waltz” was a B-side, the A-side being “Boogie Woogie Santa Claus.” Random thing I always forget: Jimmie Rodgers covering up the smell of his medicine with Black Narcissus perfume.

Beware of Mr. Blecch, er...what? (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 21 October 2019 18:32 (seven months ago) link

Just saw a busker presumably cashing in on the current country boom and doing Ray Charles singing “I Can’t Stop Loving You.”

Beware of Mr. Blecch, er...what? (James Redd and the Blecchs), Tuesday, 22 October 2019 23:14 (seven months ago) link

Was going to get around to watching this on PBS website...but uh I guess you can't do that once it's stopped airing? That's some bullshit. I pay their salaries etc etc. (Yes I am John D and Catherine T MacArthur.)

A True White Kid that can Jump (Granny Dainger), Tuesday, 22 October 2019 23:31 (seven months ago) link

There was a two week window when you could watch it, I think, otherwise you need a special membership

Beware of Mr. Blecch, er...what? (James Redd and the Blecchs), Tuesday, 22 October 2019 23:35 (seven months ago) link

I really enjoyed the first half of this but the latter part suffers from trying to extend the narratives. The lack of Glen Campbell was severely disappointing. Also, I missed the graphical devices they used to animate the early years.

Spencer Chow, Wednesday, 23 October 2019 16:26 (seven months ago) link

Yup.

Just barreled through to the end of the book. The afterword by Dayton Duncan sheds some light on the generally high quality of this documentary, albeit with the various caveats expressed throughout thread: he was already a serious fan for a few decades before starting this almost a decade-long project.

Beware of Mr. Blecch, er...what? (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 24 October 2019 23:22 (seven months ago) link

The bibliography is reasonably serious too.

Beware of Mr. Blecch, er...what? (James Redd and the Blecchs), Friday, 25 October 2019 00:23 (seven months ago) link

Also wondering if we should repurpose this thread as some kind of Good Books About Old School Country Music or find or start another thread for that purpose.

Ferlinghetti Hvorostovsky (James Redd and the Blecchs), Friday, 25 October 2019 16:22 (seven months ago) link

*fingers crossed*

Ferlinghetti Hvorostovsky (James Redd and the Blecchs), Friday, 25 October 2019 18:06 (seven months ago) link

i like that idea!

Squeaky Fromage (VegemiteGrrl), Friday, 25 October 2019 19:13 (seven months ago) link

Yes plz

Οὖτις, Friday, 25 October 2019 19:16 (seven months ago) link

First post should be about charlie louvin’s autobio

Οὖτις, Friday, 25 October 2019 19:17 (seven months ago) link

otm

Squeaky Fromage (VegemiteGrrl), Saturday, 26 October 2019 02:59 (seven months ago) link

Yes, repurpose this thread or yes, start a new one? Leaning towards the latter.

Ferlinghetti Hvorostovsky (James Redd and the Blecchs), Saturday, 26 October 2019 03:11 (seven months ago) link

Okay Lefty Frizzell singing Jimmie Rodgers’s “Brakeman’s Blues” on the official Spotify playlist for episode 1 of this is totally reminiscent of Dylan’s country voice.

Ferlinghetti Hvorostovsky (James Redd and the Blecchs), Saturday, 2 November 2019 00:50 (six months ago) link

two months pass...

I don't know if this happening elsewhere, but Houston PBS is re-airing this starting tonight in weekly installments.

a bevy of supermodels, musicians and Lena Dunham (C. Grisso/McCain), Friday, 3 January 2020 22:08 (four months ago) link

mr veg got me the book & the soundtrack for christmas #ahHAH

terminators of endearment (VegemiteGrrl), Friday, 3 January 2020 22:48 (four months ago) link

yup i saw a promo abt this re-air whilst watching antique roadshow xp

johnny crunch, Friday, 3 January 2020 22:49 (four months ago) link

Oh, I hope it’s on near me. I had dvr’d some episodes but missed the first one. They are selling them but not otherwise making them available for free online. The 1960s and 70s episodes were very interesting

curmudgeon, Friday, 3 January 2020 23:57 (four months ago) link

Although yes those episodes didn’t give Glen Campbell and others their full proper due

curmudgeon, Friday, 3 January 2020 23:59 (four months ago) link

one month passes...

I'm in a bar for a Clash Day thing, and the TV is running the Kristofferson ep on mute, and even then, that bit where Charley Pride goes over the lyrics to "Loving Her Was Easier..." is worldbeating.

Where's his movie?

a bevy of supermodels, musicians and Lena Dunham (C. Grisso/McCain), Saturday, 8 February 2020 03:11 (three months ago) link

...and of course there's a Charley Pride American Masters that aired afterwards.

a bevy of supermodels, musicians and Lena Dunham (C. Grisso/McCain), Saturday, 8 February 2020 19:36 (three months ago) link

Charley Pride was my aunt's favorite singer. That era of country was the music I heard in the cradle.

earlnash, Saturday, 8 February 2020 20:00 (three months ago) link

Via re-airing, finally saw more of the one about Outlaw etc.: Good that they slipped Freddie Fender and Flaco Jiminez in there for a second (FF's bilingual "I'll Be There Before The Next Teardrop Falls"=soulful starpower), somehow thereby mentioning them as Texas Tornadoes, but not Doug...)
Can see why Alfred was querying whether Emmylou really loomed *this* large for people of the 70s lol--my impression at the time, without hearing much of her post-GP work 'til later decades, was of her as good ambassador from outside world (post-counterculture, for inst?), and contributor to the country and countryoid community, learning from and creatively responding to tradition, esp. with her bands, trying for albums of distnctive focus (with signature sound, but also striving for records you could tell apart). Still, my more recent impression, of 70s-80s concert tapes, is of a big proto-Americana jukebox/CD carousel on random (if often gorgeous) shuffle.
Several excerpts from Heartworn Highways--the DVD I have incl. an hour's worth of bonus footage, and the color edition is worth seeking, though black and white would prob be pretty effective. The mercurial Townes segments certainly demonstrate that he wasn't always dark-to-stark, as some of this doc's commentary claims. HH has other dynamics I won't spoil, just git it and see.

dow, Sunday, 16 February 2020 22:02 (three months ago) link

Can't remember if this was said upthread, but I believe one specific example of Emmylou Harris's influence was having the CMF release The Louvin Brothers' Radio Favorites, for which I think she wrote the liner notes, when almost everything they did was out of print at the time.

He’s the Listener DJ, I’m the Listener Rapper (James Redd and the Blecchs), Sunday, 16 February 2020 22:11 (three months ago) link

Cool, didn't know that!
"Gram Parsons also recorded 'Cash on the Barrelhead.' And the biggest favor that Gram Parsons ever did for The Louvin Brothers was when he introduced Emmylou Harris to the Louvin Brothers sound. He played this song for her — I don't know exactly which song it was — but her remark was, 'Who is that girl singing the high part?' And Gram said, 'That's not a girl. That's Ira Louvin.' And so Emmylou did a big favor for the Louvin Brother music catalog. I guess it's about 500 songs in all, and she recorded five or six of them, which I appreciate. I know Ira would've, too."
Good interview:
https://www.npr.org/2011/01/27/133246237/charlie-louvin-remembering-countrys-harmonizer

dow, Tuesday, 18 February 2020 00:19 (three months ago) link

Parsons also brought "The Christian Life" to the Byrds for Sweetheart.

a bevy of supermodels, musicians and Lena Dunham (C. Grisso/McCain), Tuesday, 18 February 2020 01:08 (three months ago) link


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