Skip to main content

Folk-Legacy Records

Folk-Legacy Records logo

Folk-Legacy Records was founded in 1961 by folk musicians Sandy and Caroline Paton with their friend and business partner Lee Haggerty. Their mission was to preserve, create, and share traditional folk music with the public. “People’s music”, or songs, stories, and tunes passed down generationally and shared within communities were of special importance to them, and as folklorists and enthusiasts, they learned the extensive history of songs and traditions, pouring a wealth of cultural knowledge in liner notes and booklets accompanying albums.

Arhoolie Records founder Sandy and Caroline Paton

Early releases from Folk-Legacy include field recordings of traditional singers and instrumentalists of the British Isles, as well as regions of the U.S. including Appalachia, the Ozarks, New England, the Southwest, and beyond. Many Folk-Legacy albums in later years feature emerging artists, or folk song interpreters, with the continuing tradition in mind. The catalogue includes over 140 albums recorded by the Patons at informal gatherings of friends, live concerts, sessions in the Folk-Legacy studio and family home atop Sharon Mountain in the northwest corner of Connecticut, and right in the homes of traditional musicians.

This collection has a wide range of beautiful and lively music steeped in rich folk traditions that can be enjoyed and sung by all. It is through the work of the Patons and Haggerty that these traditional songs and their value may continue to flourish--so people will keep singing together.

In 2019, thanks to the generosity and support of friends of Folk-Legacy Records, the collection came to Smithsonian Folkways Recordings, where the legacy will live on in perpetuity.

A few recordings from Folk-Legacy Records. Click here for access to liner notes, photographs, and more.

A Living Tradition: Selections from Folk-Legacy Records by Various Artists
A Living Tradition: Selections from Folk-Legacy Records
Various Artists
FLG02001 (2019)
Frank Proffitt of Reese, North Carolina by Frank Proffitt
Frank Proffitt of Reese, North Carolina
Frank Proffitt
FLG00001 (2001, 1962)
Minneapolis Concert by Bok, Muir, Trickett
Minneapolis Concert
Bok, Muir, Trickett
FLG00110 (2006, 1987)
Sharon Mountain Harmony: A Golden Ring of Gospel by Amidon, Simpson, Rock Creek
Sharon Mountain Harmony: A Golden Ring of Gospel
Lucy Simpson, Rock Creek, Mary Alice Amidon, Peter Amidon, and Caroline Paton
FLG00086 (2002, 1982)
So Goes My Heart by Ann Mayo Muir
So Goes My Heart
Ann Mayo Muir
FLG00099 (2000, 1985)
Ian Robb and Hang the Piper by Ian Robb
Ian Robb and Hang the Piper
Ian Robb
FLG00071 (2002, 1979)