- Number of Discs: 5
- Released: January 28, 2002
- Label: Jsp Records
Recording information: Atlanta, GA (08/01/1927-12/11/1934); Bristol, TN (08/01/1927-12/11/1934); Camden, NJ (08/01/1927-12/11/1934); Charlotte, NC (08/01/1927-12/11/1934); Louisville, KY (08/01/1927-12/11/1934); Memphis, TN (08/01/1927-12/11/1934).
Arranger: A.P. Carter.
A comprehensive budget compilation by the dependable JSP label, the five-disc 1927-1934 fully covers the first seven years of the Carter Family's musical career and features recordings that are the basis of the trio's honored place in the country music firmament. The set starts, appropriately enough, with the Carters' six contributions to Ralph Peer's legendary 1927 recording sessions in Bristol, Tennessee, and then chronologically wades through every released side that A.P., Sara, and Maybelle recorded for RCA Victor. (This excludes alternate takes that are readily available on Rounder and Bear Family reissues covering the same era.)
Unlike similar collections, where much of the listening intrigue comes from charting the artists' development, the Carters' sound is presented fully formed from the opening track, "Bury Me Under the Weeping Willow," and stays at that amazingly high level until "Sailor Boy" ends more than 125 songs later. Though the liner notes are minimal, the sound is perfectly fine, especially considering the age of the recordings. The music itself, of course, is phenomenal.