Storied Ground

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - William Ruhlmann
John McCutcheon carries on a topical songwriting tradition from Woody Guthrie and Pete Seeger, whose righteous anger and earnest fervor he often echoes. He seems to have taken his inspiration directly from these 1940s left-wing protest singers, going around their '60s descendants such as Bob Dylan, Phil Ochs, and Tom Paxton, who often added a hip irony to their messages; in contrast, McCutcheon is humorless and plaintive. But he also recalls Guthrie and Seeger in that his subjects -- which on this, his 24th album, include the 1947 integration of major league baseball by Jackie Robinson and the 1955 Montgomery, AL bus boycott begun by Rosa Parks -- sometimes look back ...
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1999-11-02 Audio CD Very Good 018964446727---All items are guaranteed to be in said or better condition-We provide tracking information with every order---

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - William Ruhlmann
John McCutcheon carries on a topical songwriting tradition from Woody Guthrie and Pete Seeger, whose righteous anger and earnest fervor he often echoes. He seems to have taken his inspiration directly from these 1940s left-wing protest singers, going around their '60s descendants such as Bob Dylan, Phil Ochs, and Tom Paxton, who often added a hip irony to their messages; in contrast, McCutcheon is humorless and plaintive. But he also recalls Guthrie and Seeger in that his subjects -- which on this, his 24th album, include the 1947 integration of major league baseball by Jackie Robinson and the 1955 Montgomery, AL bus boycott begun by Rosa Parks -- sometimes look back to their era. Even when he refers to current-day matters, he draws his viewpoint from the "storied" past of the pre-'60s left. Especially in his story songs, which are far more effective than his more direct agitprop ones, he makes points that are Seeger-like, such as his defense of small business and attack on large corporations in "Key to the City," "Closing the Bookstore Down," and "The Abby D." He is at his angriest and most simplistic when confronting current concerns, such as the media fascination with celebrities "Vultures" and the spate of high school shootings "From Us"; the music in those songs, usually dominated by gentle finger-picked acoustic instruments, takes on an aggressive-rock edge. Some people will feel that the issues addressed are more complicated and less morally polarized than McCutcheon makes them seem, but the singer's intention is probably aimed more toward inspiring the sympathetic than toward converting the opposed.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 11/2/1999
  • Label: Rounder Select
  • UPC: 018964446727
  • Catalog Number: 467

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Jericho (4:38)
  2. 2 Vultures (4:02)
  3. 3 Cross That Line (4:57)
  4. 4 Key to the City (4:06)
  5. 5 Homecoming Time (4:40)
  6. 6 Two Foot Seam (2:51)
  7. 7 From Us (3:04)
  8. 8 Closing the Bookstore (4:05)
  9. 9 Crazy or Courageous (3:06)
  10. 10 One More Mountaintop (4:24)
  11. 11 The Abby D (3:38)
  12. 12 Piece by Piece (3:53)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
John McCutcheon Primary Artist, Primary Artist, Primary Artist, Primary Artist, Banjo, Guitar, Vocals, 12-string Guitar, Didjeridu
Michael Aharon Cello
J.T. Brown Bass, Background Vocals
Mike Crotty Saxophone
Robert Jospé Percussion, Drums
Pete Kennedy Electric Guitar
Moondi Klein Background Vocals, Vocal Harmony
Bruce Moisky Fiddle
Art Wheeler Organ, Piano
T.J. Johnson Mandolin
J.T. Brown Bass, Vocal Harmony
Mike Munford Banjo
Technical Credits
John McCutcheon Producer
Charlie Pilzer Mastering
Moore Moscowitz Artwork
Bob Dawson Producer, Engineer
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