Dirty Linen - 2-3/96, p.75
""The True Lover's Farewell" takes a great collection of Appalachian folk ballads...and doesn't miss the prettiness of the melodies or the haunting quality of the stories. Larue is a fine soprano...the Consort [provide] just the right touch of lute, cittern and viol."
Sing Out! - 8-10/95, p.127
"...Nearly all of the 16 [tracks] were taken from early field recordings by the Virgina folklorist Fletcher Collins, and every one is closely annotated with the kind of exhaustive notes that haven't been seen on a folk album in 15 years..."
Personnel: Custer LaRue (soprano); Mark Cudek (cittern); Ronn McFarlane (lute).
Recording information: Troy Savings Bank Music Hall, Troy, NY (09/1994).
Editors: Katherine A. Dory; Brian M. Levine.
The European folk music that British, Scottish and Irish immigrants brought with them to the U.S. paved the way for at least three forms of music: country, bluegrass and American folk. Essentially, American bluegrass is an extension of the Celtic jigs and reels of Ireland and Scotland, and the storytelling of country and American folk stems from British and Celtic folk traditions. Illustrating the parallels between English and Appalachian folk ballads, this 1994 recording consists primarily of songs that were published in the 1932 book English Folk Songs from the Southern Appalachians. The liner notes are quite comprehensive, letting us what folk singers from Kentucky, Tennessee, Virginia or North Carolina had performed the songs in the 1910s, 1920s and 1930s. On all of the songs, the Baltimore Consort features Custer LaRue, an excellent singer who joined the outfit in 1983. The expressive LaRue, who grew up in Virginia, sings in a soprano, and she often reminds us of early Joan Baez. From "the Rebel Soldier" and "Lord Baterman" to "Johnny Home from Sea" and "Arise, Arise, You Slumbering Sleeper," the charismatic LaRue has no problem brings these pastoral songs to life. Highly recommended. ~ Alex Henderson