ATO Records and music supervisor Randall Poster (‘Moonrise Kingdom,’ ‘Boardwalk Empire,’ ‘Rave On Buddy Holly’) have joined forces to release ‘Divided & United,’ a two-disc set of Civil War songs brought to life through fresh interpretations by the pioneers, Hall of Famers and rising young stars of country, bluegrass, folk and beyond. The collection celebrates music deeply vital to the history and spirit of America in tribute to the 150th anniversary of the Civil War. Each song offers a unique window on the past, with themes exploring race, identity and reconciliation in a manner that echoes profoundly today. ATO will release the album in Fall 2013.
The tremendous talents on ‘Divided & United’ span several generations and genres: Loretta Lynn, Dolly Parton (on a duet with Stuart Duncan), Vince Gill, Lee Ann Womack, Ralph Stanley, AA Bondy, Jamey Johnson, Chris Thile, Carolina Chocolate Drops, Taj Mahal, Shovels & Rope, Cowboy Jack Clement, John Doe, Karen Elson and many more. Combined they have won close to 200 GRAMMY Awards, numerous Country Music Awards and include Rock And Roll Hall of Famers, Country Music Hall of Famers and Bluegrass Hall of Famers.
‘Divided & United’ also features an essay by noted musician, filmmaker and historian John Cohen, who writes: “This record aspires to erase the legacy of segregation and through music seeks reconciliation instead, in order to celebrate a great musical heritage of America, born in pain, war and prejudice.”
Best known for his work with directors Wes Anderson, Martin Scorsese and Todd Haynes, Poster was inspired to make ‘Divided & United’ while working on the film ‘Country Strong’ in Nashville. While there he explored Music Row’s rich history and happened upon a Nashville Tennessean cover story noting the 150th anniversary of the Civil War. Poster hand-picked the artists involved, and with the help of master bluegrass guitarist Bryan Sutton, assembled the collection after extensive research.
The songs represent hope and loss, camaraderie and compassion, and the distinct voices of the North and South; born out of specific battles and turning points, sentimental, parlor songs and spirituals of the period, songs that soldiers brought into battle with them, abolition and minstrel songs, and more.
Listen to Loretta Lynn on “Take Your Gun and Go, John” at Rolling Stone: http://rol.st/1bdloty
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