Dirty Linen - 12/03, p.55
"...There really are some great performances here by one of the most important figures in country music history..."
Recorded in Canada in the late 1930's and early 1940's.
In the 1930s, Nova Scotia-born country singer Hank Snow donned flamboyant cowboy outfits and performed throughout Canada under the name "the Yodelling Ranger," taking his cue from Jimmie Rodgers, "the Singing Brakeman." This massive, five-disc Bear Family set presents the early recordings of Snow, who was short in stature but possessed a large commanding voice. While Snow wouldn't become famous in the States until the '50s, he had a long string of '30s and '40s singles in his native country, most notably the Western lament "The Prisoned Cowboy" and the woe-is-me tale "Lonesome Blue Yodel." The collection also features some of Snow's first Hawaiian-themed songs, including "Blue for Old Hawaii" and "My Kalua Sweetheart." Some fans of Snow's initial years might find this compilation to be too intimidating (or expensive), and will be well served by Bear Family's honed-down 25-track WANDERIN' ON. Highly devoted Snow aficionados, however, will no doubt be rewarded by this remarkable set.