Hi everyone, here are our five musical recommendations for the week; four streaming suggestions* and one recommended album on CD.
And since we celebrated the 4th of July this week – I’m focusing on traditional Americana music this week! I’ll jump back into recommending modern music next week.
(Click on the photo to stream or request the album you’re interested in!)
Freegal Streaming Suggestions*
Stephen Foster by RKO Orchestra:
Despite the bland album cover this is a great collection of songs by the old movie studio – RKO’s orchestra. The collection features a chorus and orchestra on some songs – others are instrumentals. I can find nothing about this collection online. Freegal lists this LP as having been released by RKO in 2011 this despite the fact that RKO studios, a big player during the Golden Age of Hollywood, was sold to the Disney company in the late fifties.
Having said that, I would guess this collection of songs was probably recorded during the 1940s, and the collection features great songs that have become woven into the American culture tapestry including: Beautiful Dreamer, My Old Kentucky Home, Oh Susanna, Jeannie With the Light Brown Hair and Carry Me Back to Old Virginny.
Freedom: A History Of US – Original Soundtrack Recording:
This is the soundtrack to the PBS series based upon the Joy Hakim book which chronicles American history from 1776 to 2001.
Songs on the soundtrack include: I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel to Be Free by Nina Simone, Because All Me Are Brothers by Peter, Paul & Mary, The Star Spangled Banner by Duke Ellington, Chimes of Freedom by Bruce Springsteen, America the Beautiful by Keb’ Mo’ , Hard Times by James Taylor and Fanfare for the Common Man by Aaron Copland.
Civil War Songs by Traditional Brass Band:
This album was released in 2013 and as with the RKO Stephen Foster collection, I haven’t found any additional information on the album online. What I can tell you is that it offers a nice collection of U.S. Civil War era brass band music. The LP includes the songs: Light Cavalry Overture, Honor to Our Soldiers, Salutation to America, Louisa Polka, Home Again and Martha Quickstep.
Yankee Doodle Dandy (O.S.T – 1942) by Various Artists:
This album is the 1942 RKO soundtrack to the James Cagney film Yankee Doodle Dandy. The film is a fictionalized account of the life of popular entertainer and Broadway musical composer George Cohen of “Born on the 4th of July” fame.
Cohen wrote a number of classic American song including: Over There, Give My Regards to Broadway, You’re a Grand Old Flag and The Yankee Doodle Boy.
Songs on the soundtrack include: Yankee Doodle Dandy, Keep Your Eyes Upon Me, Harrigan, I Was Born in Virginia and Give My Regards to Broadway.
The film Yankee Doodle Dandy has been much less popular in recent years than it once was, probably because it was filmed in black and white. However, if you’ve never seen it – you should check it out as it is fun.
The Movie Yankee Doodle:
Americana (2009) by Various Artists:
Here’s another neat collection of vintage American songs – some of these go back to the Revolutionary War era; and as with the RKO and Brass Band albums, I didn’t find any relevant details on who is playing the music via online searches, However, this too is a neat collection of classic American folk songs and, overall, ones earlier in vintage than the ones on the other albums I’m recommending this week.
Songs in this collection include: Revolutionary Fife & Drum by James Reichert, Election Eve by Frank Talley, Revolutionary War Tune 1 by Arnold Freed, Allegheny Morning by Eugene Cines, Cowboy Campfire by James Cohn, Dixieland Hop by Christopher Norton and more.
Recommended CD of the Week:
American Masters: Classical Favorites by Various Orchestras & Conductors:
This Time Life collection was originally released via mail order in 1993. The collection features some great twentieth century American music including songs composed by Gershwin, Bernstein and Copland. Songs in the set include: Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue & Catfish Row, Bernstein’s Symphonic Dances from West Side Story & Candid Overture and Aaron Copland’s Fanfare for the Common Man and Appalachian Spring. Various orchestra and conductors are featured.
Videos of the Week:
Nina Simone – I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel to Be Free
Because All Men Are Brothers by Peter, Paul & Mary
America the Beautiful by Keb’ Mo’ (Live 2016)
Fanfare for the Common Man, New York Philharmonic, James Levine
Light Calvary Overture by Traditional Brass Band
Episode at Bunker Hill by Eugene Sines
Revolutionary Fife & Drum by James Reichert
Arizona Trail by Ray Davies
Yankee Doodle Dandy by James Cagney from the film Yankee Doodle Dandy
Rhapsody In Blue written by George Gershwin, performed by the New York Philharmonic with Leonard Bernstein conducting (1976)
Have a great weekend!
*A library card is required to use the Freegal Music Service. If you live in the service area of the Southern Tier Library System, which consists of the public libraries in Steuben, Chemung, Yates, Schuyler and Alleghany counties in New York State, you can get a library card for free at your nearest public library – including our own Southeast Steuben County Library in Corning, New York. The Freegal Music Service is free for all Southern Tier Library System member libraries library card holders to access.
Artist Biography & Discography Information:
The Billboard Book of Top 40 Hits by Joel Whitburn (Billboard Books. New York. 2009.)
P.S. If you have any questions about how to download or stream free music through the Freegal Music service to a desktop or laptop computer or how to download and use the Freegal Music app let us know! Drop by the library or give us a call at: 607-936-3713
*You must have a library card at a Southern Tier Library System member library to enjoy the Freegal Music Service. Your card can be from any library in the system, and the system includes all public libraries in Steuben, Chemung, Yates, Schuyler and Allegheny Counties and includes our own Southeast Steuben Count Library in Corning, New York!
Library cards are free if you live in our service area. And you can obtain a card by visiting the Circulation Desk and presenting staff with a form of ID that features your name and your current address.
Links to the desktop versions of the catalogs for the library system – apps for each are available in your app store:
Digital Library Catalogs:
Freegal offers streaming and downloadable music
OverDrive allows you to check out eBooks, downloadable audiobooks and handful of streaming videos
RB Digital is the place you go to check out magazines – on demand – and you never have to return them!
The Traditional Library Catalog:
You can search for and request books, DVDs, music CDs, audiobooks on CD and other physical format items through StarCat – it is the modern day card catalog!