151 posts tagged with Country.
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All those without one

For the first time in history, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) is fielding a small team of refugees – between five and 10 athletes who will represent not a country, but all those without one. [more inside]
posted by roomthreeseventeen on Jun 1, 2016 - 16 comments

The Norwegian Katzenjammer Kids

The second most impressive thing about Katzenjammer is that the band members take turns playing nearly all the shared instruments -- including drums, accordion, guitar, keyboard, mandolin and contrabass balalaika. But even more impressive is that this never feels gimmicky or distracts from the songcraft, and no doubt these switchups help contribute to an amazingly varied repertoire. While their albums are great, they can't match the live shows for pure entertainment value. Fortunately, several are on YouTube including this one from 2012. [more inside]
posted by Slothrup on May 25, 2016 - 7 comments

"You find out they made mistakes, thus proving that they are human.”

In 1938, as the Great Depression was winding down, a Texas radio station began airing “Thirty Minutes Behind the Walls,” a variety show broadcast every Wednesday night from the state prison in Huntsville. The show featured male and female prisoners singing, strumming, dancing, and acting. At one point, it had five million listeners, who sent in as many as a 100,000 fan letters each year. Executions were stayed so that they would not conflict with the show, which was performed in an auditorium 50 yards from Old Sparky, the state’s electric chair.
A Peek at the Golden Age of Prison RadioThe Marshall Project: Nonprofit journalism about criminal justice [more inside]
posted by Atom Eyes on May 19, 2016 - 6 comments

Trve Cvlt Summertime

At the intersection of country, surf rock, and black metal lies the one-of-a-kind genre mashup Desert Dances and Serpent Sermons (from the always interesting Black Twilight Circle collective [bandcamp]):
Track 1: Volahn - Chamalcan
Track 2: Shataan - Caminando del Destino / Desert Smoke / Wells Run Dry
Track 3: Arizmenda - Ropeburn mutilation on the outskirts of life
Track 4: Kallathon - Falling into the Horizon, Burning into the Black Twilight
(Full album on Bandcamp here.) [more inside]
posted by Frobenius Twist on May 8, 2016 - 15 comments

Merle Haggard 1937-2016

Merle Haggard 1937-2016 [more inside]
posted by y2karl on Apr 6, 2016 - 144 comments

Red Lake County, Minnesota

After calling it "the absolute worst place to live in America" this past August (MeFi discussion), Christopher Ingraham and his family are moving to Red Lake County, Minnesota. [more inside]
posted by Johnny Assay on Mar 25, 2016 - 70 comments

Remembering the Palomino, the legendary North Hollywood honky-tonk

On February 19, 1987, it was just another night at the Palomino, with Taj Mahal and The Graffiti Band playing some folk, soul, blues and maybe a bit of jazz. It wasn't unusual for some more major musicians to be in the crowd, but this night George Harrison, Bob Dylan, John Fogerty, and Jesse Ed Davis joined Taj and jammed, with Fogerty playing "Proud Mary" at the prompting of Dylan. But if you want to visit this iconic club today, you'll find yourself in front of Le Monge banquet hall. The Palomino is no more, but you can visit the Valley's legendary honky-tonk with an oral history of The Palomino, and a fan-made VH1 "Behind the Music" style documentary that includes some vintage clips and photos. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Sep 30, 2015 - 9 comments

Hick Hop

Kenny Rogers is rumored to have said that, "Country music is whatever country people listen to." Eventually, it seems, all musical styles are absorbed into country music. Jazz, folk, pop, and Nickelback have all made their way into country music, sooner or later. Hip-hop has made an unfortunately appearance or two, but in tentative crossover format. Big Smo is here to change that; he is, he says with hip-hop swagger, Boss of the Stix. He likes mud.
posted by clawsoon on Aug 25, 2015 - 78 comments

Making a State By Iron and Blood

Britain built an empire on the slave trade. Germany perpetrated the greatest genocide in human history. Who says the Islamic State won’t be a U.S. ally someday?
posted by rosswald on Aug 20, 2015 - 54 comments

MEEF-EYE

The International Dialects of English Archive (IDEA) is a free, online archive of primary-source dialect and accent recordings of the English language. Founded in 1997 at the University of Kansas, it includes hundreds of recordings of English speakers by natives of nearly 100 different countries. To find an example of an accent or dialect, use the Global Map, or select a continent or region at the Dialects and Accents page. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Jul 27, 2015 - 15 comments

“What was thrown off the bridge really isn’t that important.”

It was the third of June, another sleepy, dusty Delta day
I was out choppin’ cotton, and my brother was balin’ hay
And at dinner time we stopped and walked back to the house to eat
And mama hollered out the back door, “Y’all, remember to wipe your feet!”
And then she said, “I got some news this mornin’ from Choctaw Ridge
Today, Billy Joe MacAllister jumped off the Tallahatchie Bridge.”
(Movie trailer, previously, previouslier) [more inside]
posted by Going To Maine on Jul 14, 2015 - 90 comments

"He was a medical doctor, but he wrote songs."

Ben Bullington was a small-town doctor in Livingston, Montana, who wrote and recorded country/Americana music in his spare time. In November of 2012 he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, and decided to start crossing things off his bucket list. One of those things was doing a songwriting workshop in Nashville, and that brought him into the orbit of the great Darrell Scott. [more inside]
posted by jbickers on Jul 12, 2015 - 6 comments

🎶 Stand by your woman 🎶

"So last week, when country radio promoter Keith Hill controversially suggested that stations should stop playing songs by female artists, it’s easy to label his actions another example of misogynistic, conservative politics.

However, Hill’s comments are actually indicative of something much bigger and far more troubling: the consolidation of an entire genre of music, and the type of environment this can create. In the case of country, it’s allowed for the repurposing of the genre’s history, and the exclusion of certain individuals."
The Conversation's Clifford Murphy, on why [country radio promoter] Keith Hill’s comments about women in country music cut far deeper than misogyny [more inside]
posted by Room 641-A on Jun 8, 2015 - 106 comments

America's Music Triangle

A new approach to framing and promoting the South's music heritage...but they left out Bristol!
posted by mmiddle on May 5, 2015 - 6 comments

This is how we roll while chillin' it in our pick up trucks

The formula works. A mashup of 6 top-40 country songs.
posted by jacquilynne on Jan 8, 2015 - 122 comments

2 bassists, 2 clarinets, 1 cellist, 1 tape-delay technician, 1 pianist

Bing & Ruth is a modern classical ensemble that plays minimalist, piano-driven music. Several videos from Tomorrow Was The Golden Age (RVNG Intl.), their 2014 album, are on Youtube: Warble, TWTGA, Police Police Police Police Police, The Towns We Love Is Our Town (Alternate), and Reflector. Their first album, City Lake, can be streamed on Soundcloud. The Bing & Ruth and Kenitle Floors EPs can be streamed on Bandcamp.
B&R is the project of David Moore, who also leads (parodic?) bluegrass band The Piledrivers and country band Pepper Johnson, and is member of experimental electronic group Emar Diem and blues rockers Langhorne Slim & The Law. In October, Will Stephenson interviewed Moore for BOMB. In 2010, Le Blogotheque released a short film of Moore set to his music.
posted by Going To Maine on Dec 19, 2014 - 8 comments

Indigo Girls - Backstage At The Greek

In July 2014, Indigo Girls did a show at the Greek Theater in LA with Joan Baez. They filmed a series of videos backstage discussing their songs and their songwriting process. In Part 1, they discuss and perform Amy Ray's song Devotion. (album version, lyrics) [more inside]
posted by hippybear on Dec 5, 2014 - 8 comments

The Big 'E'

You can read on Buddy Emmons' Wikipedia page how by the age of 19, he had already mastered and redesigned the pedal steel guitar, slowly turning it into the instrument whose sound we are all familiar with, in one form or another. You can read on his website how his peers revere him, and how he gives back to the community whom he's profoundly influenced. (Or, watch a 100-minute concert and tribute.) But perhaps it's just best to marvel at The Big E as he backs up legends in their own right; on television in 1965; how he destroys the world in a 1970's Redneck Jazz Explosion (with Danny Gatton, previously); in the mid-'80's with the Lawton Jazz Kicks Ensemble; at the 1988 British Steel Guitar convention; at the at the 1997 International Steel Guitar Convention; and in 2007, the year he retired. Or just messin' around with Nashville's top session musicians or reinterpreting the classics. There's also a great AskMe thread of Pedal Steel Guitar recommendations, if you want to hear more.
posted by not_on_display on Oct 17, 2014 - 8 comments

"our healthy but preposterous need to make lists"

The Perfect Beat is an article by The New Yorker's music critic Sasha Frere Jones where he lays out the reasoning behind his "Perfect Recordings" project, essentially a list of 200 songs that fit his personal criteria for perfection. The lists are available as Twitter timelines (volumes 1, 2, 3, 4 & 5), Spotify playlists (volumes 1, 2, 3, 4 & 5) or as one 200 song Rdio playlist. Frere-Jones answered some questions about the project and spoke about a few individual songs in The Guardian.
posted by Kattullus on Sep 8, 2014 - 46 comments

The life I love is making music with my friends

All Roads Lead to [still-living country music legend*] Willie Nelson: "In a time when America is more divided than ever, Nelson could be the one thing that everybody agrees on." [more inside]
posted by scody on Sep 2, 2014 - 27 comments

Feminism & Country Music--A Primer

The internet and Metafilter are abuzz over Maddie & Tae, the teenage country duo whose first single strikes back against the pervasive and much-maligned trend of "bro country" sweeping the country charts. But Maddie & Tae are hardly the first female country singers to bring a decidedly feminist message to the genre. Here are some highlights, in chronological order, for your listening pleasure. [more inside]
posted by zeusianfog on Aug 8, 2014 - 51 comments

Taking Back the Wheel

A riposte to the bros: duo Maggie & Tae take on bro country in "Girl in a Country Song" - “Like all we’re good for is looking good for / You and your friends on the weekend, nothin’ more / We used to get a little respect / Now we’re lucky if we even get / to climb up in your truck, keep our mouths shut, and ride along.” [more inside]
posted by sallybrown on Jul 27, 2014 - 58 comments

I had been in the arms of my best friend's wife

Unlike most murder ballads, The Long Black Veil doesn't retell the story of an actual murder. Danny Dill and Marijohn Wilkin borrowed bits of stories about Valentino and a murdered priest and a Red Foley chorus and crafted their own story in 1959 to create what he hoped would be a folk song for the ages. [more inside]
posted by julen on Jul 24, 2014 - 48 comments

What in the hell is country funk? Here are 33 tracks for reference

Here's a song I didn't know existed until summer 2007, when Lemon Jelly's Fred Deakin released an impeccably curated three-CD mix (full 4 hours on Mixcloud). Halfway through the first disc, the music slipped into an easy, loping groove, sunburned and hungover, and a regretful voice offered Otis Blackwell's lonesome lyric: "You know I can be found/ Sitting home all alone …" [Billy Swan's version of "Don't Be Cruel" is] a beautiful record, though, and utterly different from Elvis's 1956 recording. And it opens a fantastic collection of country funk songs, collected and remastered by Zach Cowie of Light in the Attic Records. More sounds below the break. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Jul 20, 2014 - 26 comments

Fresh Air or Times Square?

Where do the smartest people move? A new report finds that higher intelligence is linked with rural-to-city migration, and with city-to-suburb movement.
posted by pearlybob on Jul 3, 2014 - 14 comments

Clap Your Hands

Reverend Peyton's Big Damn Band is a 3-piece country blues band from Brown County, Indiana. They share some metafilter politics, but sing about a few more unique experiences, too. Ben plays drums, Breezy plays washboard, and the Reverend himself plays guitar and the bass line (at the same time), sometimes on a cigar box guitar. If you like what you've heard: hop a train or an old pickup, scream at the night, share some pot roast and kisses, watch out for the devils who look like angels, and don't forget to clap your hands.
posted by ChuraChura on Jun 12, 2014 - 5 comments

Is it too far to care by now?

The Old 97's are a country rock band formed in 1993. A part of the country-punk genre designated as No Depression in the early 90s (named after Uncle Tupelo's first album), they later added a more brit pop feel to their songs. In twenty good years of about twenty-five they've made their mark on the American landscape. Their newest album, Most Messed Up, is a return to their country-punk roots, where raw feelings overpower courtesy. Their lead singer, Rhett Miller, did an AMA on reddit to talk about it. The new album can be streamed here. It debuted on the Billboard 200 chart at #30, the highest debut in their history.
posted by Quonab on May 9, 2014 - 61 comments

OK, in our defense, Europe is really complicated.

Americans Try To Place European Countries On A Map, Brits have similar results attempting to place US States on a map.
posted by Blasdelb on Feb 14, 2014 - 157 comments

"Hello, I'm Henry Rollins."

The late Jesse Morris covers Black Flag's "Six Pack"- in the idiom- and voice!- of Johnny Cash [more inside]
posted by Pope Guilty on Jan 15, 2014 - 20 comments

Get into my truck, girl

Why Country Music Was Awful in 2013. Grady Smith reviewed the 10 ten country albums in 2013. This was his response to the comments. [more inside]
posted by zabuni on Dec 23, 2013 - 107 comments

Christmas Time in the Trailerpark

Y'all, consisting of Steven Cheslik-DeMeyer and James Dean Jay Byrd, first surfaced in New York city in 1992, touting themselves as the first openly gay country music act. That same year, they preformed Y'all's First Xmas Xtravagaza: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8. [more inside]
posted by 1f2frfbf on Dec 20, 2013 - 8 comments

Hobbits would only drink ales since lagers are not found on Middle-earth

So, you want to eat like a hobbit do you? The big old dragon of Middle-Earth recipes is the charmingly retro 'Middle-Earth Recipes' (now with a more modern and photo-friendly blog version ) from which NPR's Beth Accomando has complied an all-day feasting menu suitable for marathon watching (or reading) assorted Lord Of The Rings media while Recipewise sticks to foods served by Bilbo in The Hobbit itself and explains the Victorian convention of high vs. low tea. (Author Diane Duane's own Hobbit-inspired recipe, Took Family Seed Cake can be made with poppy rather than caraway seed if that's your thing) Need something to do while digesting? Why not read about the history and meaning of the rural comfort food in Tolkien at Strange Horizons " Well Stocked Larders: Food And Diet Of Hobbits" by Stephanie Green.
posted by The Whelk on Dec 15, 2013 - 45 comments

Mvua ya mawe kwa mfalme

Sir Elvis is his stage name, but his real name is Elvis Otieno, and he may be the most successful country musician in Kenya. That's partly because Kenya doesn't have many country musicians. [more inside]
posted by jquinby on Nov 6, 2013 - 13 comments

feel so good this mornin' ... gon' be downloadin' all night long

"Folk Music in America" is a series of 15 LP records published by the Library of Congress between 1976 and 1978 to celebrate the bicentennial of the American Revolution. It was curated by librarian/collector-cum-discographer Richard K. Spottswood, and funded by a grant by the National Endowment for the Arts. It's absolutely fantastic. And here it is.
posted by flapjax at midnite on Aug 10, 2013 - 21 comments

Slim Whitman, RIP

Country crooner Slim Whitman has passed away at the grand old age of 90. His gentle, relaxed and pristine voice (featuring an effortlessly soaring falsetto and a mighty fine yodel, friends) is the kind that, well, you just don't really hear anymore on the pop music landscape. Let's take a moment to revisit a musical aesthetic that now seems a million miles away... Cattle Call, Rose Marie, North Wind, Blues Stay Away From Me and Indian Love Call. So long and happy trails, Slim.
posted by flapjax at midnite on Jun 19, 2013 - 36 comments

Smooth pickin' and sweet harmonizin'

Friends, neighbors, let's drop in on ol' Don Reno, Red Smiley and the Tennessee Cut Ups for a heapin' helpin' of some of that good old time country/bluegrass goodness, shall we? What say we kick it off with their fine rendition of Love Please Come Home? Mmm-MMM, so satisfying! You know, the boys had their own lil' ol' TV show, too, brought to you by the fine folks over at your local Kroger grocery store, and I'll just bet you'd like to watch the pilot episode, now, wouldn't you? Well, here's Part one, and there's... [more inside]
posted by flapjax at midnite on Apr 2, 2013 - 3 comments

Somewhere between Elvis and the Lone Ranger

An interview with Jimmy Ellis and Gail Brewer Giorgio. (yt) [more inside]
posted by 1f2frfbf on Mar 17, 2013 - 1 comment

From the Mississippi Delta to Dumfries and Galloway, and back again

Third Man Records, the US label owned by Jack White, is collaborating with Document Records to release vinyl-only remastered versions of blues artists. Document Records, run by Gary and Gillian Atkinson in Scotland, holds the largest known pre-1945 blues, jazz and country archive in the world, with 900 titles and around 25,000 tracks. [more inside]
posted by Wordshore on Feb 6, 2013 - 43 comments

Excello Records roundup

From the early fifties to the mid-seventies, the Nashville based Excello Records released the kind of raw blues, R&B, and rock & roll that maybe wasn't ever going to make it to the Top 40, but was full of grit and sweat and soul, for those who liked their American roots music unadulterated. Their most well-known release was probably Slim Harpo's Baby Scratch My Back, but rocking blues like Lazy Lester's I Hear You Knockin' and Leroy Washington's Wild Cherry are little unpolished gems which deserved their place on any self-respecting cheap bar's juke box. Lowdown blues like Lonesome Sundown's My Home Is a Prison also found a welcome home at Excello, as did tunes that blurred the distinctions between country/rockabilly and R&B, like Lazy Lester's I'm A Lover Not A Fighter, and latin-tinged swamp-rock chuggers like Charles Sheffield's It's Your Voodoo Working. Then there were the straight up country tunes (reminiscent of that classic early Johnny Cash sound) like Al Ferrier's I'm the Man, or rough-hewn, raucous rockabilly like Johnny Jano's Havin' A Whole Lotta Fun. In short, Excello Records was a microcosm of the sound of the South, and though their artists mostly never achieved much in the way of wider national fame, they are an important part of the patchwork quilt of American pop music history. The tunes included in this post are just the tip of the iceberg: there's so much to explore from this one amazing little label. Happy searching!
posted by flapjax at midnite on Dec 26, 2012 - 7 comments

Ry Cooder and the Moula Banda Rhythm Aces - Let's Have A Ball, a film by Les Blanks

Ry Cooder and the Moula Banda Rhythm Aces - Let's Have A Ball, a film by Les Blanks
This is the complete show from the Catalyst in Santa Cruz in March 1987.   Via The Iwebender Channel

Love that Maria Elena.... [more inside]
posted by y2karl on Dec 9, 2012 - 10 comments

Haunted House: rock'n'roll novelty through the years

I just moved into my new house today1, moving was hard but I got squared away2. When bells starting rings and chains rattled loud,3 I knew I'd moved in a haunted house4. Still I made up my mind to stay,5 nothing was a-gonna drive me away.6 When I seen something that give me the creeps,7 had one big eye and two big feet.8 [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Oct 26, 2012 - 8 comments

Bob Schieffer: debate modarator as interviewer and ref

Jim Lehrer and Bob Schieffer continue their trend of moderating the first and last presidential debates, as they did in 2004 and 2008. Both grew up in Texas, and got their starts in journalism there, too, both covering the JFK assassination in 1963. Following Lehrer's role as moderator in this year's presidential debate, subsequent moderators have been under significant scrutiny before and after their performances, and Schieffer, who has covered all four of the major Washington beats, is ready for his role in the political process, in the middle of partisan divide, which is deeper than any time he can recall from his 43 years in Washington. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Oct 22, 2012 - 77 comments

Grandpa Jones

He won't win any accolades for subtlety or refinement, perhaps, but he was a beloved entertainer who stomped his feet and threw himself wholeheartedly (and very, very energetically) into every tune he ever performed, from the early days of country radio to the Grand Ole Opry to television's Hee Haw series. I'm talking about Louis Marshall "Grandpa" Jones. Today's his birthday, so why not drop in on some of the Grandpa performances on offer at ye olde YouTubes, such as Good Old Mountain Dew, Night Train To Memphis, Are You From Dixie or The Kickin' Mule. When he wasn't hamming it up for the camera, though, his vocal performances were often much more varied and accomplished. Check out, for example, his delivery and vivacious yodeling on T For Texas. And here he turns in a solid, honest version of the great Merle Travis classic, Dark As a Dungeon [more inside]
posted by flapjax at midnite on Oct 20, 2012 - 34 comments

I think I see a rip in the social fabric. Brother, could you spare some ammo?

Corb Lund is a classically trained jazz musician who was a founding member of Canadian metal legends The Smalls. For the past seventeen years, though, as the centrepiece of Corb Lund and the Hurtin' Albertans, he has been cranking out alt-country records that have garnered praise from well outside usual country music circles. His biggest hit is almost certainly the comedic Truck Got Stuck. His most recent single however is the sombre peak-oil apocalypse tune Gettin' Down on the Mountain. Corb also maintains maintains an excellent songwriting blog that he describes as 30% guitar lesson: "What That Song Means Now."
posted by 256 on Oct 15, 2012 - 22 comments

Back before the musical lines were so clearly drawn

In decades past, R&B and soul artists didn't shy away from covering country songs. That's right, children, straight up country songs. And the results were often stunningly good. For example, Al Green's performance of Kris Kristofferson's For the Good Times (best known as a hit for country crooner Ray Price). Or Ray Charles' performance of Eddy Arnold's You Don't Know Me. Or Aretha Franklin's performance of country chestnut You Are My Sunshine, first recorded in 1939 by the Pine Ridge Boys. And... [more inside]
posted by flapjax at midnite on Sep 30, 2012 - 98 comments

The Proclaimers, a lot more than I'm Gonna Be (500 Miles)

They're best known for one song: I'm Gonna Be (500 Miles), as featured in Benny and Joon in 1993, and though the identical twin brothers faded from the public eye in the US, 500 Miles was lovingly parodied by Homer Simpson in 2001, and the brothers appeared on Family Guy in 2006. That song was featured in Comic Relief 2007, and that rendition was the number 1 song in the UK for three weeks. Given this focus on a single song that was first released in 1988, you might want mark The Proclaimers as a one-hit wonder and leave it at that. But David Pollock, writing for The Guardian, wants you to reconsider: The Proclaimers are a lot better than you probably remember. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Sep 25, 2012 - 72 comments

Howdy neighbor, howdy!

It's the Porter Wagoner Show! Starring Porter Wagoner and the Wagonmasters with Speck Rhodes and Norma Jean [more inside]
posted by dirtdirt on Aug 10, 2012 - 32 comments

Roots and Branches of Americana

Ray Wylie Hubbard hosts Roots and Branches weekly live from Tavern In The Gruene for New Braunfels, Texas radio station KNBT 92.1 FM. Two hours of music and interviews with established and up and coming Americana artists.
posted by Catch on Jul 18, 2012 - 18 comments

The Wonderbra. YOU'RE WELCOME!

Know Canada. Happy Canada Day!
posted by Fizz on Jul 1, 2012 - 75 comments

Response Records: Answers to Hit Songs

Before hip-hop beefs, there were response records, also known as answer songs, usually replies to well-known songs. There are a few key eras: blues and R&B recorded music in the 1930s through 1950s, including a number of responses to "Work With Me, Annie" (1954), recorded by Hank Ballard & the Midnighters, with answers including "Annie had a Baby," and "The Wallflower" by Etta James; and Big Mama Thornton's "Hound Dog" (1953), with a quick response by Louis Innis and Charlie Gore, made a mere week after the original was released, and Rufus Thomas' "Bear Cat" (1953), Sun Records' first hit. Country, rock & roll, doo-wop and pop music picked up where the blues left off, with most activity in the 1950s to 60s. Two examples from this era are "Are You Lonesome To-night" and "Who Put The Bomp," and responses to both. The most well known from the next decade was Lynyrd Skynyrd's "Sweet Home Alabama" (1974), a response to Neil Young's "Southern Man" (1970) and "Alabama" (1972). Until the 2000s, no answer songs had charted as high as the original hits. That changed with Frankee's "F.U.R.B. (Fuck You Right Back)" (2004), a response to Eamon's "Fuck It (I Don't Want You Back)" (2003), which was the first answer song to reach number 1 in the UK. Six years later and across the pond, Katy Perry's "California Gurls" was a response to "Empire State of Mind" by Jay-Z. It was the first answer song to reach No. 1 in the Billboard Hot 100. More Responses inside. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Mar 31, 2012 - 53 comments

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