Complete Mercury Recordings

Complete Mercury Recordings

by Flatt & Scruggs
     
 

By 1948 guitarist Lester Flatt and banjo virtuoso Earl Scruggs had made their mark in a classic lineup of Bill Monroe's Bluegrass Boys, then split to assemble their own formidable, groundbreaking group. Mercury snatched up the quintet (other members included guitarist See more details below

Overview

By 1948 guitarist Lester Flatt and banjo virtuoso Earl Scruggs had made their mark in a classic lineup of Bill Monroe's Bluegrass Boys, then split to assemble their own formidable, groundbreaking group. Mercury snatched up the quintet (other members included guitarist Mac Wiseman, bass player Howard Watts (a.k.a. Cedric Rainwater), and fiddler Jim Shumate), and here on a single disc are the 28 tracks that resulted from that union. Recorded in four sessions from 1949 to 1950, this bluegrass stands alongside Monroe's towering work -- often innovative, always stirring, and still influential. Personnel changes along the way never altered the leaders' vision: The distinctive drive and heart are ever present. Employing the banjo in a lead role, Scruggs is daring and unconventional within a traditional framework -- entirely appropriate for the man who would light the way for a progressive wing with his Earl Scruggs Review in the '70s. But Scruggs wasn't the only standout: Wiseman is a revered bluegrass vocalist, Curly Seckler was a personable backwoods warbler himself, and the fiddlers matched Scruggs's musical wits -- check out the spunky dialogue that erupts between Scruggs and the great Benny Sims on the rambunctious "My Little Girl in Tennessee." Religious songs dominate the repertoire, but there's plenty of love and heartbreak here (the touching Flatt/Scruggs–penned evergreen, "We'll Meet Again Sweetheart"), irresistible good-time music ("Roll in My Sweet Baby's Arms"), and, of course, the undisputed highlight, the original, go-for-broke frolic of "Foggy Mountain Breakdown." Greater glories lay ahead, but the Flatt & Scruggs story starts here, and it's as unforgettable as it is resonant, a half century later.

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Zac Johnson
In what basically amounts to a reissue of 1992's similarly titled Complete Mercury Sessions, Universal's Complete Mercury Recordings has improved upon the original by putting the songs in chronological order and including terrific liner notes by folk historian Mary Katherine Aldin. While both Flatt & Scruggs releases include the early classics "Foggy Mountain Breakdown," "Roll in My Sweet Baby's Arms," and "Salty Dog Blues," the extras on this release make it the one to own.

Product Details

Release Date:
04/22/2003
Label:
Mercury Nashville
UPC:
0008817037424
catalogNumber:
000007002
Rank:
34560

Tracks

  1. We'll Meet Again Sweetheart
  2. God Loves His Children
  3. My Cabin in Caroline
  4. I'm Going to Make Heaven My Home
  5. Baby Blue Eyes
  6. Down the Road
  7. Bouquet in Heaven
  8. Why Don't You Tell Me So
  9. I'll Never Shed Another Tear
  10. Foggy Mountain Breakdown
  11. No Mother or Dad
  12. Is It Too Late Now?
  13. My Little Girl in Tennessee
  14. I'll Be Going to Heaven Sometime
  15. I'll Never Love Another
  16. So Happy I'll Be
  17. Doin' My Time
  18. Pike County Breakdown
  19. Preachin', Prayin', Singin'
  20. Cora Is Gone
  21. Pain in My Heart
  22. Roll in My Sweet Baby's Arms
  23. Back to the Cross
  24. Salty Dog Blues
  25. Will the Roses Bloom (Where She Lies Sleeping)
  26. Take Me in a Lifeboat
  27. Farewell Blues
  28. I'll Just Pretend

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Album Credits

Performance Credits

Flatt & Scruggs   Primary Artist
Lester Flatt   Guitar,Vocals
Earl Scruggs   Banjo,Guitar,Vocals,Baritone (Vocal)
Mac Wiseman   Guitar,Vocals
Curly Seckler   Mandolin,Vocals,Tenor (Vocal)
Howard Watts   Bass,Vocals
Art Wooten   Fiddle
Jody Rainwater   Bass,Guitar

Technical Credits

Lester Flatt   Composer
Earl Scruggs   Composer
Jim Eanes   Composer
Charlie Monroe   Composer
Jimmie Skinner   Composer
Mary Katherine Aldin   Liner Notes
Paul Mares   Composer
Andy McKaie   Reissue Producer
Bobby Osborne   Composer
Leon Roppolo   Composer
Larry Richardson   Composer
Elmer Schoebel   Composer
Curly Seckler   Composer
Howard Watts   Composer
Wiley Morris   Composer
Zeke Morris   Composer
Jessie Mae Martin   Composer
Frank Southern   Composer
Bevins Brothers   Composer
Odell McLeod   Composer
Ralph Jones   Composer
E.C. McCarty   Composer

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