Saturday, October 15, 2011

American Folk Songbook by Suzy Bogguss


American Folk Songbook by Suzy Bogguss was released a few months ago, but I just learned about it last night. I am a native Nashvillian. I was born here. I have left here. Many times. But I always end up coming back, a surprise to me sometimes more than anyone else. I love this city. These days I hope it will be my primary residence for the rest of my life. That said, I have never been a country music fan. I like some songs and a few artists, but I never listen to the numerous country music stations available to me in this city. I don't go to the many music venues either, unless a friend is performing, which is inevitable if someone is living here, but that is rare.

But one of the artists I have always enjoyed is Suzy Bogguss. She's been virtually invisible for years although I have never forgotten her and some of her songs are some of my favorites. Music on the Wind on her Aces is perhaps my favorite but I have many. I love every song on Aces and have listened to it times innumerable. It is also a boon that her voice is right in my most comfortable range so I can sing along with her. And she gets bonus points here on SurLaLune since one of her hits was Hey Cinderella.

So last night when I discovered her CD--I don't even buy CDs anymore--I had to own it. I knew it would be at home for downloading but I wanted to thank the store for informing me and spend some local dollars. I grew up singing many of these songs with my dad who loved them. He even had a thick songbook of old American songs with backstories that I attribute to contributing to my love of folklore: The Songs We Sang: A Treasury of American Popular Music by Theodore Raph. I have that book now and am thrilled to have this CD to listen to. Yes, I already have listened to it and it was worth every penny.

So if you like American folk music, this may be of interest to you. Or maybe not. I find music tends to be even more subjective than books. It is acoustic. It is simple but not simplistic.

Here's the song list. There's also a book to accompany it with sheet music and some stories. I may have to go back and buy it, too. Here's a link: American Folk Songbook. And here's the song list from the CD and book:

Companion book to the CD by Suzy Bogguss. Filled with fascinating stories, illustrations, and personal anecdotes, as well as the complete sheet music to all 17 songs arranged for vocal, guitar and piano. Foreword by John Lomax III.

Shady Grove
Red River Valley
Froggy Went A-Courtin'
Wayfaring Stranger
Banks Of The Ohio
Johnny Has Gone For A Soldier
Ol' Dan Tucker
Rock Island Line
Sweet Betsy From Pike
Swing Low Sweet Chariot
Careless Love
All The Pretty Little Horses
Git Along Little Dogies
Erie Canal
Wildwood Flower
Beautiful Dreamer


  1. I must get this right away! I'm so glad you shared...Americana love.

  2. I love these songs! And I want my young son to know about them. A definite purchase for us.