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Return Of The Repressed: The Anthology
John Fahey
Return Of The Repressed: The Anthology
Genres: Country, Blues, Folk, World Music, Jazz, Pop
  •  Track Listings (22) - Disc #1
  •  Track Listings (20) - Disc #2

"This collection represents nearly 30 years of my recordings with the acoustic guitar, an instrument that I dearly love and continue to play. To my fans new and old, thank you for letting me share my music with you and per...  more »


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CD Details

All Artists: John Fahey
Title: Return Of The Repressed: The Anthology
Members Wishing: 6
Total Copies: 0
Label: Rhino / Wea
Original Release Date: 10/4/1994
Release Date: 10/4/1994
Genres: Country, Blues, Folk, World Music, Jazz, Pop
Styles: Contemporary Blues, Traditional Blues, Traditional Folk, Contemporary Folk, Jazz Fusion, Traditional Jazz & Ragtime
Number of Discs: 2
SwapaCD Credits: 2
UPC: 081227173722


Album Description
"This collection represents nearly 30 years of my recordings with the acoustic guitar, an instrument that I dearly love and continue to play. To my fans new and old, thank you for letting me share my music with you and permitting the return of my repressed subconscious." --John FaheyThe late John Fahey holds a unique place in the history of popular music. In the early 1960s, as the folk boom was turning listeners on to such musical pioneers as Woody Guthrie, Fahey was tuned to Delta blues icon Charley Patton. John Fahey captured both the purity of the blues and its intimations of mortality on 20 albums of instrumental compositions, most for his own Takoma label, and the "American Primitive Guitar" style he created has been enormously influential. The two-CD Return of the Repressed is the first comprehensive collection of this master acoustic guitarist's best work. Spanning nearly 30 years, the 42 tracks on these two CDs are primarily Fahey originals and arrangements of traditional tunes played on solo acoustic guitar. The accompanying booklet was written by Barry Hanson (aka Dr. Demento), a friend of Fahey's since the beginning of his career, making this anthology the definitive look at the fretsman extraordinaire.

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CD Reviews

Essential, in two senses
C. H Smith | Bowling Green, Kentucky United States | 12/26/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Rhino Records has done the music world a great service over the years in resurrecting old classic works, and here's another of their successes. Fahey's approach has not changed very much over the span of his 40 year plus career, but because he is such an original this is not necessarily a bad thing. The essentials of his music can thus be reasonably succinctly listed: (1) the leading American fingerpicking style guitarist of his generation, with strong influences on Leo Kottke and many, many others (2) a quirky sense of humor, evident both in his play and choice of subject material (3) a straightforward, almost brutally direct fingerpicking style (he calls 'American primitive') influenced by American blues and a slew of other elements (4) a singular lack of popular (i.e., sales) success (with the exception of his brilliant Christmas album, "The New Possibility") (5) a concentration on solo, vocal-less 6-string play, but with occasional excursions into bottleneck guitar, tape-looping, dog barks, and whatever else might suit him, and (6) the occasional educational element (Fahey has a Master's degree as a musicologist, and spent a good deal of time in the field collecting material by old masters). This collection is excellent and representative of it all; there are 42 cuts on the 2-cd package, including, among others, 'Sligo River Blues,' 'On Doing an Evil Deed Blues,' 'Knott's Berry Farm Molly,' 'In Christ There is No East or West,' 'The Yellow Princess' (my personal favorite), 'The Approaching of the Disco Void,' 'Rain Forest,' etc., etc. The best place to start for an overview of the musical world of this unconventional but fascinating instrumentalist."
Thirty Years Of John Fahey
Steve Vrana | Aurora, NE | 12/16/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)

"The John Fahey of the Nineties tends to pan much of his early work. In a recent article for the British music magazine "Wire," Fahey says, "A lot of what I did is embarassing to me now, because it was pretentious and stupid." His legions of fans--myself included--disagree. Over the past forty years and as many albums, Fahey has created an impressive body of work which explores what the artist dubbed "American primitive" guitar.The forty-two tracks on this album are culled from twenty albums beginning with the original recording of Blind Joe Death in 1959 (although it is the 1967 rerecordings that are used) through 1992's Old Girlfriends and Other Horrible Memories. Since only a handful of Fahey's albums are still in print, this compilation offers an opportunity to hear many songs that are otherwise unavailable.Fahey's unique blend of blues and folk music make for some of the most arresting finger-style guitar playing you'll ever hear. Fans of Leo Kottke, the late Michael Hedges or countless other guitar players influenced by Fahey, owe it to themselves to listen to this generous sampling of songs from the master. Highlights are too numerous to mention, but I especially enjoy "Desperate Man Blues," "I'm Gonna Do All I Can for My Lord," "On the Sunny Side of the Ocean" and "In Christ There Is No East or West." ESSENTIAL"
A Solid Retrospective Of An Essential Atrist
Michael Strom | Chicago, IL USA | 03/12/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Surprising to see so few reviews of this set (so far). Fahey was hugely influential in the boom in acoustic guitar music that followed his recordings of The Legend Of Blind Joe Death in 1959, 1964 & 1967. It's doubtful that we ever would have heard Leo Kottke or any of the Windham Hill guitarists (Ackerman, Hedges, De Grassi, et al) if not for Fahey's playing, recording, producing and advocacy of this genre of music.It is hard to get your arms around such a sprawling body of work, but this 2 CD anthology does a pretty good job. On the plus side, it includes a generous 6 cuts from Blind Joe Death. On the other hand, there is only 1 cut from America -- an inexplicable shortcoming fortunately remedied by the subsequent release of an extraordinarily expanded version of America. Anyone interested in Fahey should at least supplement this anthology with America.Fahey went many places with his acoustic explorations and, frankly, one is unlikely to enjoy all of the songs here. However, the overall batting average is high (more so on disc 1 than on disc 2)."