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Dark as a Dungeon: Songs of the Mines
 
 
Artist
Bill Harrell & the Virginians, the Country Gentlemen, the Seldom Scene, the Steep Canyon Rangers, Larry Sparks & others.
Label Rebel
Format CD
Runtime/Release Date 48'13/2010
UPC 032511751027
Daedalus Item Code 17970
This item is not available.
Description
"Dark as a dungeon, damp as the dew/ Where the danger is double, and the pleasures are few." Those words from Merle Travis's famed title track, written about the Muhlenberg mines near his home, tell it like it is: since 1890, coal mines have claimed the lives of more than 7,000 miners in Kentucky alone. Other highlights include John Prine's "Paradise" sung by the Seldom Scene; Randall Hylton's "Coal Town Saturday Night"; and Ricky Skaggs and Keith Whitley's "Dream of a Miner's Child," recorded when they were teenagers. Other songs focus on black lung (the Country Gentlemen's "A Miner's Life" and Wildwood Valley Boys' "Black Dust Fever"), mine disasters (Ralph Stanley II's "Daddy's Dinner Bucket"), and visions of a better life (Bill Harrell & the Virginians' "Green Rolling Hills").

"Certainly one of the most dangerous and emotionally harrowing jobs ever imagined, mining makes sheer life and death a daily issue, and a body of songs that is part folk, part blues, part country, part spiritual, and part political has formed around it. Call it American realism with a social agenda. Mining songs, like train songs, remind us that life is a daily and perilous journey, and that between here and there anything at all can happen. They remind us that life is dearly lived."All Music Guide

 
 
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