John Cohen --one of the founding members of the New Lost city Ramblers and an early pioneer in rural field recordings --has compiled this rich and fascinating collection of raw Appalachian sounds from field hollers to Bill Monroe. There are good notes and photos in a 32-page booklet as well as some great music, however for all but the most hard-core fans and scholars this CD will be more of a reference item than one for listening: personally, to draw listeners (especially new converts) to explore old-time music you don't start an album with a field holler and a Dillard Chandler unaccompanied vocal, no matter how authentic these may be. But to point out some of the most memorable of the 27 tracks here we cite cuts by Texas Gladden, Roscoe Holcomb, Dock Boggs, Tommy Jarrell, DaCosta Waltz Orchestra (a re-issue from 1927), Doc Watson and Gaither Carlton, E.C. and Orna Ball, French Carpenter and the Stanley Brothers (RANK STRANGER). There are a few instrumental tunes, a few religious pieces and ballads --lots of ballads.