Classic Country Music: A Smithsonian Collection

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Classic Country Music: A Smithsonian Collection
Classic Country Music A Smithsonian Collection.jpeg
Compilation album by
various artists
Released1990 (1990)
Recorded(all selections previously released)
LabelBMG/Smithsonian Collection of Recordings
ProducerMargaret Robinson
various artists chronology
The Smithsonian Collection of Classic Country Music
Classic Country Music: A Smithsonian Collection
Professional ratings
Review scores
Allmusic(no review) 4/5 stars[1]

Classic Country Music: A Smithsonian Collection was a multi-volume set of recordings released by the Smithsonian Institution. Released in 1990, the collection contains 100 tracks deemed to be significantly important to the history of country music.

Classic Country Music was issued on either four compact discs, four cassette tapes or six vinyl albums. It also contained an illustrated 84-page book by Bill C. Malone, a country music historian. Malone's extensively annotated essay details country music's history era by era, from its beginnings in the 1920s and commercialization during the 1930s through its growing popularity during the 1980s.

Significant artists whose works were included were Vernon Dalhart, Jimmie Rodgers, the Carter Family, Sons of the Pioneers, Bob Wills, Roy Acuff, Ernest Tubb, Eddy Arnold, Hank Williams, Johnny Cash, Kitty Wells, Loretta Lynn, Willie Nelson, George Jones, Alabama and The Judds. While many of country music's most important artists are included, notable artists whose works were absent – as acknowledged by Malone in his preface, because the artists chose not to participate – were Ray Charles, Merle Haggard, Reba McEntire, Linda Ronstadt, George Strait and Randy Travis.

This new collection replaced The Smithsonian Collection of Classic Country Music, an eight-volume, 143-track collection issued in 1981 (and whose liner notes were also written by Malone). The earlier set included many songs from the 1920s and 1930s, as well as bluegrass and other related genres to country music, and spanned the years 1922 to 1975.

Track listing[edit]

Note: The track listing reflects the content of the compact discs. The sequencing is identical on the albums and cassettes, but different tracks may be on different volumes.

Disc 1
1."Soldier's Joy"Gid Tanner and his Skillet Lickers2:55
2."Jordan is a Hard Road to Travel"Uncle Dave Macon and his Fruit Jar Drinkers3:06
3."Barbara Allen"Bradley Kincaid3:20
4."The Prisoner's Song"Vernon Dalhart3:03
5."Wildwood Flower"Carter Family3:08
6."Waiting For a Train"Jimmie Rodgers2:43
7."Blue Yodel No. 8 (Muleskinner Blues)"Jimmie Rodgers2:59
8."Ragged But Right"Riley Puckett2:54
9."Can the Circle Be Unbroken"Carter Family3:07
10."That Silver-Haired Daddy of Mine"Gene Autry and Jimmy Long2:46
11."Just Because"The Shelton Brothers2:58
12."St. Louis Blues"Milton Brown and his Brownies3:21
13."My Mary"W. Lee O'Daniel and his Light Crust Doughboys with Leon Huff3:11
14."The Great Speckled Bird"Roy Acuff and His Crazy Tennesseans2:51
15."Under the Double Eagle"Bill Boyd and his Cowboy Ramblers2:48
16."I Want to Be a Cowboy's Sweetheart"Patsy Montana and the Prairie Ramblers3:08
17."South of the Border (Down Mexico Way)"Gene Autry2:48
18."Tumbling Tumbleweeds"Sons of the Pioneers3:11
19."Cool Water"Sons of the Pioneers2:41
20."Rye Whiskey"Tex Ritter3:08
21."Steel Guitar Rag"Bob Wills and His Texas Playboys2:48
22."New San Antonio Rose"Bob Wills and His Texas Playboys2:39
23."Walking the Floor Over You"Ernest Tubb2:35
24."Born to Lose"Ted Daffan's Texans2:42
25."You Are My Sunshine"Jimmie Davis2:48
Disc 2
1."Pistol Packin' Mama"Al Dexter and His Troopers2:46
2."There's a Star-Spangled Banner Waving Somewhere"Elton Britt2:39
3."The Cattle Call"Eddy Arnold3:05
4."Wabash Cannonball"Roy Acuff and His Smoky Mountain Boys2:36
5."Kentucky"Blue Sky Boys2:44
6."New Pretty Blonde (Jole Blonde)"Moon Mullican and His Showboys2:57
7."Philadelphia Lawyer"Maddox Brothers and Rose3:00
8."I Am a Pilgrim"Merle Travis2:48
9."It's Mighty Dark to Travel"Bill Monroe and his Blue Grass Boys2:52
10."Randy Lynn Rag"Flatt & Scruggs and the Foggy Mountain Boys2:04
11."Slipping Around"Floyd Tillman2:45
12."The Tramp on the Street"Molly O'Day with the Cumberland Mountain Folks2:48
13."I'm Moving On"Hank Snow and His Rainbow Ranch Boys2:53
14."Take an Old Cold Tater (and Wait)"Little Jimmy Dickens2:48
15."Tennessee Waltz"Pee Wee King and His Golden West Cowboys (featuring Redd Stewart)3:00
16."Peace in the Valley"Red Foley3:10
17."Lovesick Blues"Hank Williams2:42
18."Your Cheatin' Heart"Hank Williams2:41
19."I Love You a Thousand Ways"Lefty Frizzell2:43
20."The Wild Side of Life"Hank Thompson and His Brazos Valley Boys2:41
21."It Wasn't God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels"Kitty Wells2:30
22."Slowly"Webb Pierce2:31
23."Country Gentleman"Chet Atkins2:14
24."I Really Don't Want to Know"Eddy Arnold2:33
25."Sixteen Tons"Tennessee Ernie Ford2:34
26."Blue Moon of Kentucky"Elvis Presley2:03
27."Bye Bye Love"The Everly Brothers2:21
Disc 3
1."You Win Again"Jerry Lee Lewis2:53
2."Young Love"Sonny James2:31
3."I Walk the Line"Johnny Cash2:43
4."Crazy Arms"Ray Price2:33
5."He'll Have to Go"Jim Reeves2:18
6."Faded Love"Patsy Cline3:42
7."The Battle of New Orleans"Johnny Horton2:31
8."El Paso"Marty Robbins4:41
9."Big Bad John"Jimmy Dean3:01
10."When I Stop Dreaming"Louvin Brothers2:29
11."Detroit City"Bobby Bare2:47
12."We Must Have Been Out of Our Minds"George Jones and Melba Montgomery2:38
13."Excuse Me (I Think I've Got a Heartache)"Buck Owens2:25
14."Hello Walls"Faron Young2:20
15."Ode to Billie Joe"Bobbie Gentry4:12
16."King of the Road"Roger Miller2:26
17."Green Green Grass of Home"Porter Wagoner2:21
18."Funny How Time Slips Away"Willie Nelson2:37
19."Gentle on My Mind"Glen Campbell2:56
20."Rocky Top"Osborne Brothers2:33
21."Coal Miner's Daughter"Loretta Lynn2:58
22."Coat of Many Colors"Dolly Parton3:02
23."Folsom Prison Blues"Johnny Cash2:42
24."Stand By Your Man"Tammy Wynette2:39
25."Homecoming"Tom T. Hall3:17
26."Is Anybody Goin' to San Antone?"Charley Pride2:12
Disc 4
1."For the Good Times"Ray Price3:47
2."Sin City"The Flying Burrito Brothers4:10
3."After the Fire is Gone"Conway Twitty and Loretta Lynn2:36
4."I Never Go Around Mirrors"Lefty Frizzell2:32
5."Why Me"Kris Kristofferson3:27
6."The Grand Tour"George Jones3:05
7."Love Hurts"Gram Parsons and Emmylou Harris3:37
8."Bob Wills is Still the King"Waylon Jennings3:26
9."Who'll Turn Out the Lights"Ronnie Milsap3:18
10."Mamas Don't Let Your Babies Grow Up to Be Cowboys"Waylon Jennings and Willie Nelson2:28
11."'Til I Gain Control Again"Rodney Crowell5:04
12."Beneath Still Waters"Emmylou Harris3:41
13."The Devil Went Down to Georgia"The Charlie Daniels Band3:33
14."He Stopped Loving Her Today"George Jones3:12
15."Old Flame"Alabama3:11
16."40 Hour Week (For a Livin')"Alabama3:20
17."A Country Boy Can Survive"Hank Williams Jr.4:13
18."Don't Get Above Your Raisin'"Ricky Skaggs3:11
19."Honky Tonk Man"Dwight Yoakam2:46
20."Kids of the Baby Boom"The Bellamy Brothers3:24
21."9 to 5"Dolly Parton2:42
22."Grandpa (Tell Me 'Bout the Good Ol' Days)"The Judds4:12


  1. ^ "Classic Country Music: A Smithsonian Collection". Allmusic. Retrieved 26 December 2011.