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Shenandoah CD

4.7 out of 5 stars 43 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

NEW Combo BLUWAVS CD and FLAC FILE
  • Sample this album Artist - Artist (Sample)
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (February 9, 2009)
  • Original Release Date: February 9, 2009
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: CD
  • Label: SBME SPECIAL MKTS.
  • Run Time: 50 minutes
  • ASIN: B002HMHR9Q
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (43 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #73,338 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
This is one of my favorite show albums (and I have some 500). The show played three years on Broadway, despite, or maybe because of its wholesome, old-fashioned values. Based on the James Stewart film of the same name, "Shenandoah" begins on a farm in Virginia's Shenandoah Valley, in the early days of the Civil War, where the Anderson boys are itchin' to get into the fight. Their father Charlie (John Cullum, who won a Tony as best actor in a musical for this role), won't hear of it. He's heard it all before. But circumstances will bring the family into the conflict, cause pain and heartache, and change them all.
The two 'Meditation' numbers are among my favorite cuts. They are far-ranging, reflective solos that sum up the entire show beautifully. Charlie tries to make sense of the world and his family's place in it while talking to his wife's grave. As he shares the memories of settling in the Shenandoah Valley ("we started on a penny and a crumb"), and raising their many children ("a loving wife with child again, and I'm thinkin' I should sleep with the cow, Martha, yonder in the barn with the cow"), the listener can almost see farm and family, and can feel his pain when he sings about his beloved wife's death.
Fans who know John Cullum's work primarily from his years starring as bar owner "Holling Vincour" on "Northern Exposure" (and also from his work this season on "E.R.") will find his character in "Shenandoah" to be the closest of his many Broadway roles to those TV characters...fiercely loyal, independent, sometimes cantankerous, but also loving and caring.
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Format: Audio CD
I saw it on Broadway in 1976, and for years I owned the cast recording on LP. It got broken and it was many years before I found it on CD. As soon as the overture started I knew it was still my favorite The patriarch, played so well by John Collum vows that "They'll never take my sons to face those Yankee guns" but eventually the war invades his farm in the Shenandoah valley. Regardless of what he believes, its time to begin fighting, but not for the cause of states' rights. Rather, the Anderson family fights for what matters most - their family. The drama that unfolds, and the wonderful ending are more than enough reason to stay up late and watch the movie version, but the music from the Broadway play adds more depth to the characters and their daily struggles. Whether it is the lighthearted tunes such as "Freedom" or "Next to Lovin' I like Fightin", or the deep, thoughtful solos such as "I've Heard it All Before" the music guides the story and gives us a glimpse of what day to day life must have been like for most Americans from 1861-1865. As the Andersons struggle to pursue a normal life in the face of the ever encroaching war, the sense is there that this struggle involves far more than politics and cannon fire. Anderson's personal beliefs are tested over and over until he finds he can no longer stay out of the war. The cost to his family and himself is huge, but in the end, the family, although tragedies mount, manages to stay together and to stay strong. I'd give anything to see the full Broadway version again, but failing that, this CD makes me feel like I am back there seeing it for the first time.
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Format: Audio CD
I first owned this soundtrack in vinyl when it was originally released in the early '70's. I alway regretted never seeing John Cullum do the show.( I saw it in summer stock.) It may be a bit hokey by some standards,but I find it quite appealing. I particularly like the "meditation" at the end of the show. Don't let anyone tell you the ending! When I saw it there was not a dry eye in the place! I have a friend who calls it the last great family groupie musical.
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Format: Audio CD
Considering that in 1975...it had to open with A CHORUS LINE, THE WIZ, and PIPPIN. Plus GREASE was still running strong. I missed the original cast but I saw it on the road...and no play made me tear up at the finale like this one. The music is excellent....my favorite was Freedom, the most uplifting piece in the score. Plus John Cullum at his best, a beautiful tenor voice...powerful and strong! Plus Penelope Milford humorous OVER THE HILL! And the rousing theme of the Anderson Boys...NEXT TO LOVIN' I LIKE FIGHTIN'! I love this so much that I have three copies of the Cast album. and two copies of the CD! The sound is excellent on the CD. You'll find yourself singing along with PASS THE CROSS TO ME.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
John Cullum gave many excellent performances in many shows on Broadway, had at least one Tony in his hands, but never made it to the top ranks of Broadway performers. I suspect that it is shows such as "Shenandoah" that were the cause of that. The show comes alive; it vibrates with emotion and meaning as he sings. But then, since his singing all of the songs would be impossible, someone else takes over, and we sink back a little more each time a number comes and goes without him. To be fair, times have changed since this show was on Broadway. Standards change. Styles change. And sometimes time is not kind to a show. Sadly, this seems to be the case here. It is not a bad show, but if it were being written now, and with a little more care, the songs would have blended better as a score. The singers chosen might have been a bit better fitted to their parts and
the show would not sound so 1970, at best.Also, perhaps this release should have been 'tweaked' a little to place it firmly in the age in which it was supposed to take place - the Civil War. It now is country, and a little western - unless Cullum is singing.
Buy it if you must have every musical to have lasted more than three performances ("Anyone Can Whistle" went beyond that and belongs in everyone's collection.) Buy it if you are a John Cullum fan. Buy it if you want to hear one of the best male leads that Broadway ever had, but who was ignored in our frantic adoring of the women, Martin, Merman, Verdon, Peters, Rivera, and so many more, so that only Robert Preston made it through that time period as a strong lead, even though he really wasn't a singer.
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