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The American Song-Poem Anthology : Do You Know The Difference Between Big Wood And Brush

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The American Song-Poem Anthology : Do You Know The Difference Between Big Wood And Brush album cover
01
Do You Know The Difference Between Big Wood And Brush - Gary Roberts And The Satellites
3:30
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Rat A Tat Tat, America - Dick Kent
3:01
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I Like Yellow Things - Bobbi Blake
2:14
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I'm Just The Other Woman (Remake) - The MSR Singers
2:37
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Human Breakdown Of Absurdity - Norm Burns And Singers
4:20
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Maker Of Smooth Music - Dick Kent
2:19
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Beat Of The Traps - Rod And The MSR Singers
2:38
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Richard Nixon - Rod And The MSR Singers
2:53
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Jimmy Carter Says 'Yes' - Gene Marshall
2:23
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Convertibles And Headbands - The Music Magicians
4:04
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How Long Are You Staying - Bill Joy
2:34
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Little Rug Bug - Rod Rogers With The 'Swinging Strings'
2:27
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I Lost My Girl To An Argentinian Cowboy - Unidentified
2:20
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City's Hospital Patients - Teri Summers And The Librettos
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Ecstacy To Frenzy - Rodd Keith
2:12
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All You Need Is A Fertile Mind - Gene Marshall
2:22
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The Moon Men - John Muir
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The Palace Roses - Todd Andrews
2:22
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Gretchen's New Dish (Original) - Dick Kent
2:10
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How Can A Man Overcome His Heartbroken Pain - Rodd Keith
4:06
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Song Of The Burmese Land - Cara Stewart
2:21
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Green Fingernails - Gene Marshall
1:55
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Listen Mister Hat - The Jerrymanders
2:35
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Pinch Me - Unidentified
2:31
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The Duck Egg Walk - Milford Perkins
2:36
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Ho, I Got To Find You Baby - Randy Rudolph
2:20
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Run Spook Run - Rodd Keith
2:15
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Blind Man's Penis (Peace And Love) - Ramsey Kearney
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Album Information
EDITOR'S PICK

Total Tracks: 28   Total Length: 75:17

Find a problem with a track? Let us know.

Wondering Sound

Review 0

Ira Kaplan

Contributor

04.22.11
Various Artists - Bar None Records, The American Song-Poem Anthology : Do You Know The Difference Between Big Wood And Brush
Label: Bar/None Records

Every record that I love seems to create its own private world, with its own language and logic. At its best, the song-poem — basically a hustle in which the mark pays to have his words put to music with the so-vague-it's-not-illegal promise of riches — combines the naiveté of the lyricist with the punch-drunk cynicism of the anonymous assembly-line studio musicians, and ends up with something you've never heard the likes of before. It… read more »

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Flip 'em out

Nothed

Just put this on at a party, don't say anything and see how cool some people really are. The truly cool won't be able to pass it up, that is if cool beyond cool is cool.

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Stroke It Now

Okthapuul

The All Music Guide review of this album is totally spineless and self-conscious. Johnny Loftus sounds like a douche. Check out this album!! But don't like it too much, cause that may (or may not) be cool.

They Say All Music Guide

A sometimes fascinating, surprisingly musical, and mostly bizarre collection of independent recordings from the 1960s and ’70s, The American Song-Poem Anthology is an outsider artifact tailor-made for hipsters. “Song-poem” was a euphemism employed by shady, fly-by-night recording studios. “We’ll put your poem to music!,” their classified ads would scream. Would-be songwriters would pay 75-400 dollars to have their words — however odd, fetishistic, or charmingly mundane — set to music and performed by the studio’s stable of songwriters, musicians, and vocalists. Desperate for content and hurting for cash, these backroom studios would accept anything and perform it in any style, so long as the writer was willing and able to pay. Over the years, thousands of song-poems were recorded, with wildly varying results. And like any cultural backwater, the collecting of them became the preoccupation of such notable hipsters as Yo la Tengo’s Ira Kaplan and Tom Ardolino of NRBQ (who sold his vast storehouse of song-poems to infamous jokester illusionist Penn Jillette). Naturally, in a classic case of trickle-down pop culture, Bar/None Records has assembled 28 of the most notable song-poems on the first volume of their American Song-Poem Anthology, subtitled “Do You Know the Difference Between Big Wood and Brush?” Bar/None is a Hoboken, NJ, indie label that’s built a reputation as an expert in revisionist hip. It’s the same imprint that in the mid-’90s perpetuated the resurgent interest in kitschy ’60s bandleader Juan Garcia Esquivel. It also released 2002′s Langley Schools Music Project — a 1976-1977 recording of Canadian school children singing popular rock songs of the day that found favor amongst tastemakers of the so-odd-it’s-marvelous camp. Musically, the Song-Poem Anthology offers all kinds of delights. “Rat a Tat Tat, America,” “Richard Nixon,” “Jimmy Carter Says “Yes,” and “The Moon Men” are the products of misguided patriots; Bill Joy’s “How Long Are You Staying” is the creepy tale of one man’s desire to disco at any cost, set to a chintzy retelling of KC & the Sunshine Band’s “Boogie Man.” The song typifies the quality of much of this anthology. Since time and money were tight, half-baked arrangements, syrupy vocals, and first takes were the name of the game. But “How Long Are You Staying,” “Blind Man’s Penis (Peace and Love),” or Bobbie Blake’s simple, sunny tribute to the color yellow are memorable not simply for their screwy lyrics or sloppy arrangements, but for the by-chance moment of genius that the intersection of both created. There’s no question that The American Song-Poem Anthology will appeal more to hipster know-it-alls than the average consumer. But is anyone’s music collection really complete without the MSR Singers’ languid “I’m Just the Other Woman (Remake),” sung in a goofy faux-soprano by notable song-poem performer Rod Keith? At the very least, the collection is a gold mine of mix tape material. – Johnny Loftus

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