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The Civil War [Soundtrack]

  • 79256

News & Reviews

  • To mark the 25th anniversary of the debut of Ken Burns's acclaimed documentary The Civil War, PBS will rebroadcast the series over five consecutive nights starting Labor Day Monday, September 7. This is the first presentation of a newly restored, high-definition version of the landmark documentary. This is also the first time the film will be seen with the same fidelity and framing as the negative that Burns and his co-cinematographers Allen Moore and Buddy Squires shot more than 25 years ago. The film's soundtrack, released on Nonesuch Records in 1990, won the Grammy Award for Best Traditional Folk Album.

  • To celebrate Jackie Robinson Day—marking the day when, in 1947, Jackie Robinson made his major league debut with the Brooklyn Dodgers and broke the color barrier in professional baseball—the Nonesuch Journal revisits Natalie Cole's performance of "Did You See Jackie Robinson Hit That Ball?," off the original soundtrack recording to Ken Burns's landmark 1994 documentary Baseball. Listen to the track here.

  • About This Album

    1991 Grammy Award Winner: Best Traditional Folk Album

    Nonesuch released the official soundtrack recording to The Civil War, the five-part film by Ken Burns deemed one of the most popular offering ever presented on public television, in 1990. With over 14 million viewers each night, The Civil War earned high critical acclaim and a 13 percent market share in the Nielsen ratings for its debut telecast. The documentary series traces the personal and political fortunes of both the leaders and the soldiers who were involved in America’s greatest internal conflict.

    Featuring traditional American music ranging from brass bands to gospel choirs, “the music in The Civil War achieves an eloquence parallel to that of the narration, and it reinforces the visual illusion of aching, coming-to-life immediacy. All the music is contemporary to the period; Burns even hired musicians to play instruments that are no longer made.” (GQ) Ken Burns, the creator of the series, and John Colby served as producers of the recording.

    Among the well-known American songs featured in The Civil War are “Battle Hymn of the Republic,” “Dixie,” “Shenandoah,” and “When Johnny Comes Marching Home.” The theme music to the series, “Ashokan Farewell”, a haunting fiddle tune, opens and closes the 30-track recording. It also includes two spoken word excerpts of an opening track taken from the writings of Oliver Wendell Holmes, and a reading of a love letter from a Union soldier to his wife which serves as the finale of the recording.

    Credits

    MUSICIANS
    The Old Bethpage Brass Band, Dr. Kirby Jolly, director
    The Abyssinian Baptist Church Sanctuary Choir, Dr. Jewel T. Thompson, director
    The New American Brass Band, Robert Sheldon, director

    PRODUCTION CREDITS
    Produced by Ken Burns and John Colby
    Music research and coordination: Jesse Carr
    Ashokan Farewell from Waltz of the Wind by Fiddle Fever, produced by Jay Ungar and Fiddle Fever, and We Are Climbing Jacob's Ladder from River of Life: Harmony of One, by Bernice Johnson Reagon, produced by Bernice Johnson Reagon and Toshi Reagon, both available from Flying Fish Records. Dixie produced by Bobby Horton.
    Engineers: Billy Shaw, Don Wershba, Michael Golub, Paul Goodman, Scott Hull
    Recorded at Soundesign, Brattleboro, Vermont; Soundtrack, 39th Street Music, and BMG Studios, New York
    Mastered by Robert C. Ludwig

    Design by Kristeen Ballard
    Cover Image: The 5th Vermont at Camp Griffin, Virginia, at the beginning of the Civil War, Library of Congress

     

nonesuch's picture
on May 29, 2008 - 7:14pm
Artist Name: 
Ken Burns
Various Artists
Release Date: 
Friday, November 30, 1990 - 05:00
DescriptionExcerpt: 

The historically accurate music on this Grammy-winning soundtrack to Ken Burn’s PBS series, says GQ, "achieves an eloquence parallel to that of the narration, and it reinforces the visual illusion of aching, coming-to-life immediacy." Features the evocative "Ashokan Farewell."

Description: 

1991 Grammy Award Winner: Best Traditional Folk Album

Nonesuch released the official soundtrack recording to The Civil War, the five-part film by Ken Burns deemed one of the most popular offering ever presented on public television, in 1990. With over 14 million viewers each night, The Civil War earned high critical acclaim and a 13 percent market share in the Nielsen ratings for its debut telecast. The documentary series traces the personal and political fortunes of both the leaders and the soldiers who were involved in America’s greatest internal conflict.

Featuring traditional American music ranging from brass bands to gospel choirs, “the music in The Civil War achieves an eloquence parallel to that of the narration, and it reinforces the visual illusion of aching, coming-to-life immediacy. All the music is contemporary to the period; Burns even hired musicians to play instruments that are no longer made.” (GQ) Ken Burns, the creator of the series, and John Colby served as producers of the recording.

Among the well-known American songs featured in The Civil War are “Battle Hymn of the Republic,” “Dixie,” “Shenandoah,” and “When Johnny Comes Marching Home.” The theme music to the series, “Ashokan Farewell”, a haunting fiddle tune, opens and closes the 30-track recording. It also includes two spoken word excerpts of an opening track taken from the writings of Oliver Wendell Holmes, and a reading of a love letter from a Union soldier to his wife which serves as the finale of the recording.

ProductionCredits: 

PRODUCTION CREDITS
Produced by Ken Burns and John Colby
Music research and coordination: Jesse Carr
Ashokan Farewell from Waltz of the Wind by Fiddle Fever, produced by Jay Ungar and Fiddle Fever, and We Are Climbing Jacob's Ladder from River of Life: Harmony of One, by Bernice Johnson Reagon, produced by Bernice Johnson Reagon and Toshi Reagon, both available from Flying Fish Records. Dixie produced by Bobby Horton.
Engineers: Billy Shaw, Don Wershba, Michael Golub, Paul Goodman, Scott Hull
Recorded at Soundesign, Brattleboro, Vermont; Soundtrack, 39th Street Music, and BMG Studios, New York
Mastered by Robert C. Ludwig

Design by Kristeen Ballard
Cover Image: The 5th Vermont at Camp Griffin, Virginia, at the beginning of the Civil War, Library of Congress

 

Cover Art: 
Nonesuch Selection Number: 

79256

Number of Discs in Set: 
1disc
ns_album_artistid: 
18
ns_album_id: 
44
ns_album_releasedate: 
Thursday, November 1, 1990 - 05:00
ns_genre_1: 
0
ns_genre_2: 
0
Album Status: 
UPC/Price: 
Label: 
CD+MP3
UPC: 
075597925623BUN
Price: 
16.00
Label: 
MP3
UPC: 
603497080663
Price: 
13.00
MusicianDetails: 

MUSICIANS
The Old Bethpage Brass Band, Dr. Kirby Jolly, director
The Abyssinian Baptist Church Sanctuary Choir, Dr. Jewel T. Thompson, director
The New American Brass Band, Robert Sheldon, director

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