June 13, 2009

Song - The Ballad of Soapy Smith

When I was young my mom used to buy me the strangest records that I absolutely loved. Everything from the complete radio broadcast of H. G. Wells' War of the Worlds, to famous moments in recorded history from Thomas Edison, etc. The company, Folkway Records sent catalogs to my mom and she always let me pick a couple out for myself. In 1981 they came out with the album, Southeast Alaska Folk Tradition, Vol. 2: Stampede and Settlement, 1898-1941. My mom bought it for my dad because it had to do with the Klondike gold rush and there was a Soapy Smith song on it. Actually, the song was part of a mix of two readings and the whole section is called, Stampede: Stroller White's Account / Diary of a Stampeder / Soapy Smith (medley). The "medley" is actually called, The Ballad of Soapy Smith written by Al Oster in 1962. Many years ago I recorded the song from a record onto a cassette tape. It was not a professional job by any means but it got the job done and I still have and listen to that old cassette tape periodically.

Thanks to Smithsonian Folkways - Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage , I was able to purchase a perfect download of the 4:30 minute composition for $0.99.

I hope you enjoy it...

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