The Folk Den Archive
October 4, 2002 9:37 PM   Subscribe

The Folk Den Archive In November, 1995, Roger McGuinn (yes, that Roger McGuinn - the same guy, BTW, who was originally Jim McGuinn) started uploading original renditions of traditional folk songs for free distribution. He's been doing it every month ever since. In seven years, he's covered American classics from "John Henry" to "Get Along Little Dogies" while also covering the rest of the world in tunes as diverse as "Finnegan's Wake" and "Waltzing Matilda". He also puts up an appropriate holiday song each December. Each song is usually available in a variety of downloads, and is heavily annotated, so if you ever wanted to know the original 1829 lyrics to "Stewball", this is the place to go.
posted by yhbc (15 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Still don't believe it's the same Roger McGuinn? Oh, alright - here. (That's a 300kb/s mp3 download - other versions of him doing the same song - are all available here).
posted by yhbc at 9:39 PM on October 4, 2002

This is very cool! As soon as I stop listening to Stayin' Alive I am going to listen to this site instead because I am a big folkie.
posted by kate_fairfax at 9:52 PM on October 4, 2002

Good links. Long live FolkFilter.
posted by Hildago at 10:14 PM on October 4, 2002

[this is good]
posted by PugAchev at 10:18 PM on October 4, 2002

Thanks, yhbc. Posts like this are why I love MeFi. :)
posted by Lynsey at 10:20 PM on October 4, 2002

In the spirit of vibrant, combative discussion, let me just add... eh... well, that ain't bad, is it?

posted by transient at 11:28 PM on October 4, 2002

Count me in as one of those who come here for the links, and stay here for the links. Great stuff.
posted by ceiriog at 6:02 AM on October 5, 2002

Wow - excellent links, thanks so much, yhbc. I was unaware of this site. The lyrics and notes with each song are great - what a wonderful documentation to keep the music alive. I always loved the Byrds and McGuinn - Sweetheart of the Rodeo remains one of my favorite albums.
posted by madamjujujive at 6:32 AM on October 5, 2002

bravo yhbc. great post.
posted by tolkhan at 6:43 AM on October 5, 2002

I can only add, thanks for a brilliant link.
posted by Fat Buddha at 8:03 AM on October 5, 2002

There goes my weekend.
posted by anathema at 9:31 AM on October 5, 2002

in another tuneage vein, you simply must check out y2karl's weekly radio show drylongso if you haven't. "it ain't the meat, it's the motion, that makes your daddy wanna rock..."
posted by quonsar at 3:34 PM on October 5, 2002

I heartily second the y2karl nomination, and apologize if I trod on any toes with this one! The link has been in my favorites file for so long, though, that I was very pleasantly surprised to find it hadn't been brought here before. Again, enjoy.
posted by yhbc at 7:08 PM on October 5, 2002

It is a nice link, yhbc, and I do appreciate the link, quonsar, but I'm sorry to say that our station's server at Loudeye is down and the show's been off the air for a week. Loudeye is going tits up dotbomb style at warp speed and has laid off workers in the hundreds. We had a sweetheart deal once but our sweetheart no longer works there, I guess. A new server is in the works, I am told, but when and how is something I don't know. I am very bummed about this--I feel so helpless...
posted by y2karl at 11:10 PM on October 5, 2002

McGuinn (by either first name) has always been one of my favorite former members of rock royalty. Three of the five original Byrds bandmembers are alive and Turn Turn Turn still gets lots of airplay so they could be out there raking it in as an oldies act (just like the R*lling St*nes) -- except that McGuinn won't do it.

Two brief vignettes, both from Athens, GA.

#1, McGuinn arrives at 40 Watt Club as a solo act. Except the stage is set up for a band, with three vocal mics, three monitors, drumkit, etc. Rumors fly. McGuinn comes out and does indeed play first half as a solo act. Takes intermission. Returns for second half, backed up by 3/4ths of REM. (Stipe is missing). One HELL of a set. The REM guys played Byrds songs like they had et, drunk and breathed them for 20 years, as I'm certain they had.

#2, McGuinn, touring with the post-Byrds band he called ThunderByrd, plays UGa student center. Joint is packed because tickets are $4 and students will basically go to hear any band that's on-campus and cheap/free but none of these kids has any idea who they're about to hear. Ten minutes into the show I hear on all sides of me, "Who the f*ck IS this guy? How can he be so good and I've never heard of him?" (P.S. show is mostly new stuff, not recycled Byrds songs.) Atmosphere in auditorium goes electric. Kids even quit hitting on each other in order to listen.

Show ends, McGuinn leaves stage, waits a GOOD long time before bowing to unrelenting demands for encore. Encore is obviously well and purposely prepared to knock 'em dead -- consists of five songs all neatly segued one into the next with no break: Mr. Tambourine Man, Eight Miles High, Wasn't Born to Follow, Mr. Spaceman, Turn Turn Turn. Whole crowd is transformed into EEEEEEEE-screaming maniac fans. (I am personally in tears.)
posted by jfuller at 11:04 AM on October 7, 2002

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