This is an hour of Russian folk songs arranged for baritone and chorus by a variety of hands, including such master composers as Nicolai Rimsky-Korsakov and Dmitri Shostakovich. The golden-voiced Dmitri Hvorostovsky provides the full-throated baritone solo, backed by the idiomatic voices of the St. Petersburg Chamber Choir. All of the music is performed unaccompanied but the lack of instruments does not preclude great variety as the mood of the songs changes from number to number.
Vivaldi’s famous Four Seasons sway listeners’ emotions by depicting how country-folk in 18th-century Italy react to the joy of Spring, the heat of Summer, Autumn wine and Winter storms. In north-western Finland, the ancient tradition of folk-fiddle playing in Kaustinen has nurtured a new generation of string players, leading to the formation of two world-class orchestras (modern and baroque) in the region.
Ronnie D. Lankford, Jr. of AMG wrote of the lager 8 disc set: Time-Life's The Folk Years is a massive survey of folk, pop-folk, and folk-rock from the 1950s and 1960s spread out over eight discs. At 15 songs per CD – equaling 120 total – this chronicle offers a healthy sampling of popular folk music covering dozens of known and forgotten singers and bands. The emphasis of the collection is on popular folk and popular music influenced by folk, meaning that most of the songs here charted. This emphasis also gives The Folk Years a broader appeal than the average folk revival compilation, making it as fun as it is educational.
ONE WAY GLASS is a very different kind of RPM compilation. Instead of the usual cross-section of Sixties collectables, this unique 3-CD set takes a fresh look at British music from the late 60s through to the mid-70s, with an eye on overlooked dancefloor-friendly finds. The rhythmic backbone of One Way Glass lies in Progressive Rock outfits who - every so often - would emulate their jazz heroes and record funky sides tucked away on albums or B-sides. Many of these tracks (Jonesy, Hardin & York) have been known to collectors of Funky Breaks for years.