Joe Thompson is among the last African-American fiddlers still active in the South. A member of a North Carolina farming family with an active stringband tradition, Joe has been playing music since the 1920s. Released to coincide with Joe's eightieth birthday, this disc documents tunes and songs going back three generations of Thompson family musicians.
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A country-blues mix with a few hymns thrown in for good measure, this album from North Carolina fiddler Joe Thompson conjures up notions like summertime... outdoors... parties. Thompson did the arranging, but most of the tunes are traditional, providing a snapshot of a regional music that has gone pretty much unchanged for years--Thompson himself has been playing since the 1920s. It's not as daring or genre-bending as, say, Gatemouth Brown, but it is a lot of fun. --Genevieve Williams