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Art of Field Recording Volume I: 50 Years of Traditional American Music Documented by Art Rosenbaum

Four CDs, 96 page book, LP-size box
Publication Date: November 6, 2007

Recognition: Grammy® Awards Winner of the 2008 Best Historical Album
Nominated for the Best Liner Notes of 2008
ARSC Awards Nominated for the 2008 Award for Excellence in Historical Recorded Sound Research

 Compiled by Lance Ledbetter and Art Rosenbaum,Art of Field Recording Volume I is a four disc set with a 96 page book that contains essays and annotations by Art and over 100 illustrations and photographs by Art and his wife Margo. Art took a similar approach to Harry Smith in assembling the music: the discs are divided into Blues, Instrumental and Dance, Sacred, and a Survey disc that has a little bit of everything.

Pitchfork Media: “Even when Art and Margo are, ostensibly, acting as silent observers, it is still possible to sense the Rosenbaums’ presence, and some of the interview-heavy cuts (see Mary Heekin’s rendition of “Lord Randolph,” from Disc 1) expose Art and Margo’s investment in their work. The narrations included here can be as telling as the songs themselves.”

USA Today: “Harry Smith’s Anthology of American Folk Music for a new generation…”

Wall Street Journal: “This four-disc set offers a sweeping survey of the American folk tradition, including blues, work songs, Mexican corridos, and more. Many of the recordings — which range from 94-year-old Sister Fleeta Mitchell’s “I Am on the Battlefield for My Lord” to 7-year-old Ray Rhodes’s true-crime ballad “Fred Adams” — appear on CD for the first time.”

Black Grooves: “Every tune in Art of Field Recording is a gem, and shine all the brighter because Rosenbaum’s love of music – and the people who do it – takes the listener on a journey into out-of-the-way American places where traditions are still created, re-created, and passed on down the line.”

Uncut: ***** [5 stars out of 5] “This set unearths all manner of unknown Americana. Archivists Art and Margo Rosenbaum spent half a century recording obscure artists from the backwoods: parlour tunes, church hymns, slide blues, chain gang songs, Southern gospel and creepy country ballads. Complete with scholarly tome, the result is a riveting document of an all-but-vanished culture. An essential companion piece to Harry Smith’s Anthology of American Folk Music.”

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