Five Songs

ECOTONE ISSUE 20 IS BURSTING WITH SOUND, a sampling of which is included here, in our first audio supplement. Four of these tracks feature songs from Southern musicians: Piedmont blues player Etta Baker and her sister, Cora Phillips; ballad singer Texas Gladden; fiddler Frank Patterson and banjo player Nathan Frazier; and blues player Ironing Board Sam, whose latest album will be out in 2016. They come to us from vital record labels and archives—Music Maker, the Alan Lomax Archive, and Spring Fed Records. The fifth track, recorded and produced by Grace Barcheck, features the music made by the Whillans Ice Stream in western Antarctica. More about its sounds can be found in Kathryn Miles’s essay in the issue, “Mapping the Bottom of the World.” And in a special section, One-Track Mind, musicians Dom Flemons and Alice Gerrard cover the two oldest recordings here, which were first released as 78s. Although the format available to us is more ephemeral, we’re happy to offer these songs for your listening pleasure.

Going Down the Road Feeling Bad
Etta Baker and Cora Phillips
recorded 1988–1990
Music Maker, Carolina Breakdown, 2005

One Morning in May
Texas Gladden
recorded by Alan Lomax in the 1940s
Alan Lomax Archive; Rounder Records, Texas Gladden: Ballad Legacy, 2001

Po’ Black Sheep
Nathan Frazier and Frank Patterson
recorded by John Work III in the 1940s
Spring Fed Records, John Work III: Recording Black Culture, 2007

Bedroom Window
Ironing Board Sam
recorded in 2013
Music Maker, Double Bang!, 2013

Whillans Ice Stream Stick-slip Event Tremor
Grace Barcheck
forty-minute recording sped up 10x
January 11, 2011

This supplement is available via one-time download to subscribers and purchasers of Ecotone 20. Instructions for downloading are included in the print issue.