Ernest V. Stoneman’s contributions to the musical heritage of 20th century America cannot be ignored. He was among the first rural performers to record and release his music. He practically defined the “three chords and the truth” approach to songwriting. He formed a unified whole out of the disparate world views of modern society and the mountain traditions of Southwestern Virginia.
Next month (September 23, 2008) will see the release of a two-disc compilation of his works, titled The Unsung Father Of Country Music, 1925-1934. Included with the disc is a 44 page booklet containing an introduction by Patsy Stoneman, along with many historical images.
The release party for this CD set is a planned two-day affair to be held in Galax, VA September 5-6. The event will include live concerts, presentations, and advance sales of the product. On September 5 there will be a series of performances, by local and regional artists, presented at the Rex Theater in Galax. September 6 will see a presentation by Henry Sapoznik, co-producer of the box set, taking place at the Blue Ridge Music Center on the Blue Ridge Parkway near Galax, VA, followed by a performance by Roni, Patsy & Donna Stoneman. This event is free, and open to the public.
Many of Virginia’s leading political figures have invited, including Governor Tim Kaine (D-VA), Congressman Rick Boucher (D-VA, 9th Dist.), Senator Jim Webb (D-VA) and Senator John Warner (R-VA). If they all choose to attend, this is sure to be a high profile event honoring the music of one of America’s historical treasures, Ernest V. Stoneman.
2008 also marks Stoneman’s induction into the Country Music Hall of Fame. A well deserved honor.