Sunday, January 9, 2022

VA - Make It Your Sound, Make It Your Scene, Vanguard Records & The 60's Musical Revolution [2012] (4 x CD's)



VA - Make It Your Sound, Make It Your Scene, Vanguard Records & The 60's Musical Revolution [2012] (4 x CD's)

Vanguard was one of the most influential record labels of the 1960's and early 70's, founded in 1950 by Seymour and Maynard Solomon. It established itself releasing some of the very best recordings in the jazz, classical and folk fields. It captured the fledgling folk revival scene as it emerged in the late 1950's, releasing albums by such leading folk figures as Joan Baez, Buffy Sainte-Marie, Richard & Mimi Fariña, Ian & Sylvia, the Weavers, the Rooftop Singers, John Fahey, Odetta, Jerry Jeff Walker, Doc Watson, Hedy West, Patrick Sky and Eric Andersen. It also issued LPs by blues artists Big Mama Thornton, Buddy Guy, Skip James, Mississippi John Hurt and Junior Wells among others. As the hippie era and progressive trends developed Country Joe & The Fish, Circus Maximus, Sandy Bull, the Serpent Power and the Frost were signed.

From the late 1950's onwards, Vanguard recorded and released music from the annual Newport Folk Festivals. The albums based upon the festivals introduced audiences to a wide selection of musical styles not usually heard in the mainstream, including old timey, Appalachian ballads, electric blues and cajun music. They were some of the first to introduce the concept of the music festival and jazz, blues and folk festivals followed in their wake. Included in this box set are a selection of these ground-breaking Newport Festival performances, sometimes by acts signed to labels other than Vanguard. Bob Dylan, Pete Seeger, the Swan Silvertones, Koerner Ray & Glover, Dave Van Ronk, the Stanley Brothers, Tom Paxton, Jesse Fuller are among the artists included who recorded at the Festivals.

Make It Your Sound, Make It Your Scene examines how Vanguard mirrored all of these musical styles and social changes during the 1960's musical revolution. It also relates how it felt to be a British fan of the label: the initially hard-to-find imports, the later licensing deals with Top Rank and Fontana, and, finally, domestic releases on a proper Vanguard Records UK imprint.

The box comprises 4 CDs with 83 tracks. There is an introduction by acclaimed writer Sam Charters (The Country Blues) and record producer (of Country Joe & The Fish, the Frost, Lightnin' Hopkins and the Chicago/The Blues Today! series). The booklet accompanying the box set contains many outstanding images including not only album artwork but numerous 60's ads, magazines covers, sales flyers and band photos, many previously unseen or not seen for 40+ years. There is a previously unreleased-on-CD Bob Dylan Newport performance of North Country Blues and also a rare instrumental, orchestral version of Janis (Country Joe's song for Janis Joplin), only available previously as the B-side of a very hard-to-find 45rpm Vanguard single. (Amazon)


Pt. 1    Pt. 2  


Track lists


01 Skip James I'm So Glad 1:56

02 Big Bill Broonzy Done Got Wise 2:33

03 Mississippi John Hurt Stagolee 5:37

04 Golden Gate Quartet Gospel Train 2:09

05 Swan Silvertones, The Oh Mary, Don't You Weep 4:01

06 Robert Wilkins The Prodigal Son 9:38

07 Revon Reid; Dewey Balfa Bosco Stomp 2:18

08 Otis Spann Blues is a Botheration 4:02

09 J.B. Hutto & the Hawks Too Much Alcohol 2:32

10 Pee Wee Crayton Blues After Hours 3:40

11 Duane Allman; John Hammond, Jr. I Can't Be Satisfied 3:16

12 Koerner, Ray & Glover Whats the Matter With the Mill 2:17

13 Dave Van Ronk Cocaine 3:47

14 Rev. Gary Davis Samson and Delilah 3:39

15 James Cotton Cotton Crop Blues 2:22

16 Charlie Musselwhite Clay's Tune 5:11

17 Otis Rush I Can't Quit You Babe 3:17

18 Junior Wells You Lied to Me 3:28

19 Buddy Guy Fever 4:57

20 Big Mama Thornton Ball and Chain 7:24


01 Doc Watson Deep River Blues 3:11

02 Mike Seeger Hello Stranger 2:44

03 Almeda Riddle House Carpenter 7:24

04 Hedy West 500 Miles 2:41

05 Stanley Brothers Little Glass of Wine 3:57

06 Watson Family Going Down This Road Feeling Bad 2:13

07 John Herald; Greenbriar Boys Stewball 2:35

08 Weavers This Land is Your Land 2:45

09 Cisco Houston Pretty Boy Floyd 3:30

10 Rooftop Singers Walk Right In 2:36

11 Liam Clancy The Rocky Road to Dublin 2:16

12 Clancy Brothers Jug of Punch 2:59

13 Country Gentlemen The Leaves That Are Green 1:49

14 Peter Rowan; Bill Monroe Walls of Time 4:16

15 Pete Seeger Where Have All the Flowers Gone? 2:20

16 Hedy West Anger in the Land 3:32

17 Phil Ochs There But for Fortune 2:14

18 Eric Andersen Thirsty Boots 5:55

19 Tom Paxton The Last Thing on My Mind 2:47

20 Jesse Fuller San Francisco Bay Blues 2:48

21 Clarence White; Kentucky Colonels Roll on Buddy 1:55

22 Kingston Trio Hard, Ain't it Hard 3:07

23 Patrick Sky Many a Mile 3:15


01 Bob Dylan North Country Blues 4:24

02 Joan Baez Farewell, Angelina 3:17

03 Ian & Sylvia Early Morning Rain 4:00

04 Richard & Mimi Fariña Reflections in a Crystal Wind 3:33

05 Odetta Driving on Bald Mountain 6:58

06 Ian & Sylvia Four Strong Winds 3:30

07 Jim Kweskin Mobile Line 3:28

08 Serpent Power Dope Again 0:50

09 Country Joe & the Fish I-Feel-Like-Im-Fixin-To-Die Rag 3:47

10 Sandy Bull Gotta Be Juicy (Or it Ain't Love) 5:12

11 Notes From the Underground Down in the Basement 2:19

12 Circus Maximus Negative Dreamer Girl 2:45

13 Frost Rock and Roll Music 2:50

14 Harvey Mandel; Charlie Musselwhite Cristo Redentor 3:21

15 Serpent Power Nobody Blues 3:52

16 Paul Butterfield Blues Band Born in Chicago 4:07

17 Sandy Bull Easy Does It 9:22

18 Country Joe & the Fish Janis 2:39

19 Frost Sweet Lady Love 3:04

20 Circus Maximus Lonely Man 2:05


01 Joan Baez The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down 3:22

02 Gary & Randy Scruggs Hobo's Lullabye 3:53

03 Dillards Dueling Banjos 2:14

04 Jerry Jeff Walker Shell Game 3:46

05 Kinky Friedman Get Your Biscuits in the Oven and Your Buns in the Bed 2:27

06 Jim Kweskin & the Jug Band; Maria Muldaur I'm a Woman 3:54

07 John Fahey March! for Martin Luther King 3:42

08 Tom Paxton The Death of Stephen Biko 3:54

09 Country Joe & the Fish Here I Go Again 3:27

10 Elizabeth You Should Be More Careful 4:06

11 Buffy Sainte-Marie Soldier Blue 3:19

12 Kinky Friedman Sold American 3:18

13 Oregon Sail 4:31

14 John McLaughlin; Larry Coryell Rene's Theme 4:10

15 John Fahey Commemorative Transfiguration and Communion at Magruder Park 6:01

16 Jerry Jeff Walker Morning Song to Sally 4:25

17 Buffy Sainte-Marie She Used to Want to Be a Ballerina 2:17

18 31st of February A Nickels Worth of Bennys Help 4:26

19 Notes From the Underground Wish I Was a Punk 2:39

20 Country Joe McDonald Kiss My Ass 3:12




  1. Great box set, Vanguard is really a great label (all these artists!),
    Blues, Folk and even Psychedelic... Thanks for all this BB, it's great.

    1. Hi Patrick,
      I really like these type of box sets. Glad you do too.


  2. Thanks
    31st Feb is that a typo....HaHa