VARIOUS ARTISTS 'A Christmas Family Tragedy: Legends Of The 1929 Lawson Family Murders'
Many years ago we carried a very popular regional booklet titled “White Christmas—Bloody Christmas” about a tragedy that occurred in Stokes County, N.C. on Christmas day, 1929. As it turned out, there were several recordings made about the event, in which Charlie Lawson killed his wife and 6 children and then took his own life. The magnitude of the tragedy, and the fact that no one really knew why it happened, made it a perfect addition to the growing group of story songs that had a ready market in rural America. The Carolina Buddies and the Red Fox Chasers recorded songs about the event, and it is somewhat surprising that this new DVD does not make better use of them. The DVD gives us a passable account of the tragedy, told mostly through the words of a few old timers who recalled the events, but much of the material is second hand, rehashed, and not particularly revealing. In short, this is more of a morbid curiosity item than the really effective documentary that it could have been.