The Stanley Brothers:
The Definitive Collection (1947-1966)
FIRST COMPREHENSIVE BOX SET FROM BLUEGRASS LEGENDS
THE STANLEY BROTHERS
April 3, 2007
VIA TIME LIFE
Collection Marks the 60th Anniversary of Their First Recordings
Three Previously Unreleased Tracks and
Two Songs Not Available on CD Before
As Well As
Music Used in
O Brother Where Art Thou
Fairfax, VA — On the 60th Anniversary of their first studio recording, bluegrass legends
the Stanley Brothers will be commemorated with The Stanley Brothers: The Definitive Collection (1947-1966).
Released to stores on April 3, just two days after Ralph’s 80th birthday (note original date was February 27),
it is the first comprehensive box set to chronicle their entire career.
The Definitive Collection comes at a time when bluegrass is in the midst of
a surge in popularity, started by the hit film and
soundtrack O Brother, Where Are Thou? and continuing on with artists
such as Dolly Parton, Alison Krauss and Nickel Creek releasing critically acclaimed
and commercially successful albums dedicated to the genre.
Released 40 years after their last performance together, the box set includes
songs from every record label they recorded for and rare live performances.
The package is highlighted by three previously unreleased tracks and two
additional songs that have never been available on CD before, as well
as rare photos, many of which were culled from vintage ‘song and picture
books’ that were sold by radio stations in the 1940s and 50s and
from the King Records photo archives.
It also includes a biographical essay by bluegrass historian Gary Reid and
a special introduction by Ricky Skaggs.
The Stanley Brothers are regarded as one of the preeminent groups from the
early days of bluegrass music. With Carter possessing one of the finest voices
in the genre and his brother Ralph's inspired banjo playing (his unique
sound has come to be called “Stanley-style”) the duo performed what is
now known as traditional bluegrass. As Carter’s melancholy voice brought sweeping emotion
to a song, his brother Ralph’s soared above; together they blended to achieve
a most soulful duet.
Said Carter, “We’re the Stanley Brothers, that’s the way I’ve always tried to
work it… we have got out, I think, and developed a sound of our own.
I think as long as you sing a song with the best feeling you’ve got, and if
you do feel it, I think the people will know it and they’ll call it whatever
they want to call it.”
Despite the fact that it’s been four decades since the demise of the
Stanley Brothers, a fascination with them and their music continues to
grow. They have been enshrined in the International Bluegrass Music Association’s
prestigious Hall of Honor and are currently the subject of a
critically acclaimed theatrical production called “Man Of Constant Sorrow.”
Over the years, artists such as Ricky Skaggs (who hit #1 with their “Don’t Cheat
In Our Home Town”), Patty Loveless, and Emmylou Harris have had significant
hits by recording songs originally written or recorded by the Stanley Brothers.
The duo also remains very much in the hearts of fans at a grassroots level;
pickers at bluegrass festivals play their songs in countless informal jam
sessions every weekend.
This collection finally pays due to a group that shaped classic bluegrass and continues
to influence each new generation of pickers and singers.
While they have been the subject of label-specific compilations in the past,
The Definitive Collection is the only collection that spans their
full career, amassing the most important, influential and beloved songs.
Included in the set are classics “The White Dove,” made in 1949, “Rank Strangers,”
“How Mountain Girls Can Love,” “Pretty Polly” and “Oh Death.”
“Angel Band,” was later featured in the award-winning soundtrack
to O Brother. “I’m A Man Of Constant Sorrow” was also used as the model for
the version that was recorded for the film, and Ralph contributed a new
recording of their “Oh Death” for it as well.
Stanley Brothers fans and music historians alike will relish the three previously unreleased
songs unearthed for the box set; “Will You Be Loving Another Man” (1955),
“Tell Me Why My Daddy Don’t Come Home” (one of the first songs the brothers
ever performed and finally recorded at a coffeehouse performance in
Hollywood in 1962), and “Sugar Coated Love,” (recorded with Carter’s longtime
inspiration, Bill Monroe). The two songs in the collection that
have never been available on CD before are the gospel
gems “Hide Ye In The Blood” and “Dust On The Bible.”
The Definitive Collection reflects Time Life’s ongoing commitment to bringing top
quality American music to life. In just the past year, the company has released
an anthology, Gloryland: 30 Bluegrass Gospel Classics from leading bluegrass
label Rebel Records, and has issued the compilation Bluegrass Country
In addition, the company launched the Legends of American Music series, featuring
critically acclaimed box sets on Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis and
About Time Life Inc:
Headquartered in Fairfax VA, Time Life Inc. was founded in 1961 as a direct
marketing company specializing in music and books. It has since grown to become
one of the world’s largest direct marketers of audio and video products,
selling more than 13 million units each year throughout North America,
Europe, Asia and Australia, and is the largest advertiser of music products
in Germany, Australia, and the United Kingdom. Time-Life set the standard
in the direct response industry by pioneering direct marketing techniques,
building one of the most trusted and recognized brands in commerce.
The company now also sells their products through major traditional and
non-traditional retailers around the world as well as via the Internet. Time Life
is a registered trademark of Time Warner Inc. used under license by Direct
Holdings Americas Inc., which is not affiliated with Time Warner Inc.
For further information, please contact:
The Brookes Company
(310) 558-3000 x201