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  • New Box Set From Influential Folk Revival Pioneers The New Lost City Ramblers Available August 25th

    On August 25, 2009 Smithsonian Folkways will release the New Lost City Ramblers' 50 Years: Where Do You Come From? Where Do You Go?, a 3-disc box set from a trio whose reverence for and dedication to the geniuses of the American folk music tradition put them at the vanguard of the burgeoning folk revival movement in America during the late 1950s. The box set will be available in independent record shops, online retailers, digital download providers, and in both physical format and digital download format from

    The New York area-born members of the Ramblers - Mike Seeger, John Cohen and Tom Paley, who was eventually replaced by Tracy Schwarz — have a longstanding relationship with Smithsonian Folkways. Two of the albums in '50 Years' were previously released Ramblers albums, and the third is a newly compiled disc of Ramblers tracks and field recordings of traditional Southern and Appalachian musicians whose work the Ramblers set out to preserve, promote and emulate in both underground and popular forums across America.

    Volume I, "The Early Years," features recordings from 1958 to 1962; Volume II, "Out Standing in Their Field," features recordings from 1963 to 1973 and Volume III, "Where Do You Come From? Where Do You Go?," is a new compilation that provides an in-depth look at the Ramblers' impressive career over the course of several decades.

    Featuring artists including Dock Boggs, Roscoe Holcomb, Elizabeth Cotten, Reverend Gary Davis, Tom Ashley and many others, '50 Years: Where Do You Come From? Where Do You Go?' is a celebration of the New Lost City Ramblers' 50th anniversary and their landmark field recordings and stellar renditions of classic folk tunes.

    50 Years: Where Do You Come From? Where Do You Go? contains three and a half hours of music, 81 songs, including six previously unreleased tracks, 88 pages of booklet liner notes from folk music writers Jon Pankake and Ray Allen, Professor of Music and director of the American Studies program at Brooklyn College. As the album title implies, these recordings embody the Ramblers' mission to not only learn as much as possible about American folk music, but to help define its place in American music history. '50 Years' can be listened to as a classic folk story within a folk story. Equipped with reel-to-reel tape recorders, these men led a grassroots campaign to catalog the music immortalized in this box set.

    On August 7th, Mike Seeger, traditional music advocate and founding member of the New Lost City Ramblers, passed away at the age of 75. Please click here for a profile of Mike Seeger, including video and audio samples.