Various Artists – Folk Roots: A Classic Anthology Of Song

Essentially a Transatlantic label sampler of folksy recordings from the '60s and '70s

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Folk Roots mixes the obvious with the obscure and serves as an effective introduction to English, Scottish and Irish folk music at the moment it was reaching out from the incipient clubs to embrace underground and pop audiences. Despite sneaking Donovan’s “Universal Soldier” under the counter alongside one or two other folk-derived hits, like Ralph McTell’s cloying “Streets Of London”, this selection invariably hits the mark. There are five tracks from Transatlantic’s best known folk ambassadors, Bert Jansch and John Renbourne, and choice cuts from lesser lights it championed, genuinely groundbreaking acts like Sweeney’s Men, The Young Tradition, Dransfield and?a real boon?Mike & Lal Waterson’s otherwise deleted “Bright Phoebus”.

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