Spring Fed Records General Information
Spring Fed Records is the music production program of the Arts Center of Cannon County, a non-profit arts organization in the small, rural town of Woodbury in Middle Tennessee. Begun in 2002, Spring Fed Records has grown quickly, producing critically acclaimed CD releases every year. Spring Fed produces only the finest old-time, bluegrass, blues and traditional gospel recordings as well as reissuing significant historical musical recordings.
Our first three releases Uncle Dave at Home, Billy Womack in Retrospect, and Sam and Kirk Live: 1955-1967 are high quality productions with liner notes contributed by Dr. Charles Wolfe and Mr. Paul Wells, drawn from digital audio masters prepared at the Center for Popular Music, Middle Tennessee State University. These three productions put Spring Fed Records on terra firma for its next endeavor.
In 2006 Spring Fed Records began production of custom print on demand CDs. These high quality CD-Rs allow Spring Fed to produce multiple CD releases simultaneously. Spring Fed Records joined forces with Dr. Steven Davis to remaster and reproduce some of the core recordings of the 1970s Davis Unlimited Catalog. The Davis Unlimited Record Label was the brain child of Steven Davis and Charles Wolfe, scholars and old time and bluegrass enthusiasts who recorded unheralded traditional fiddlers, banjoists and string bands of the 1970s as well gathered collections of 78s and gave them a chance to be heard. Much of the original talent on Davis Unlimited was drawn from the ranks of the Tennessee Valley Fiddler's Convention in Athens, Alabama. A DIY outfit before it was cool, Davis Unlimited produced small runs of LPs with extensive liner notes for a small and enthusiastic audience. Spring Fed Records currently produces twenty-five of these titles. Eventually we hope to release the entire Davis Unlimited Catalog. Check out Bob Buckingham's extensive article for Fiddler Magazine on the Davis Unlimited/Spring Fed connection here.
Spring Fed's next project resulted in a Grammy Award for Album Notes for co-producer Bruce Nemerov. This recording, John Work III: Recording Black Culture along with is accompanying travelling exhibit celebrates the contributions of Fisk University folklorist who travelled the south recording African American folk music in the 1930s and 1940s.
2009 saw the release of the Spring Fed Records/Cedar Glade Productions DVDs. These titles are the product of intensive field studies conducted by Buddy Ingram in Lebanon, Tennessee. Each of the seven titles features fine performances from luminaries of the old time music circuit, including Will Keys, Charlie Acuff and Clyde Davenport. 2009 also saw the release of Howard "Howdy" Forrester: The MGM Recordings. Howdy (above) was the longtime fiddler in Roy Acuff's Smokey Mountain Boys and one of the most influential fiddlers of all time.Want to learn more about Howdy Forrester? Read all about Howdy in Gayel Pitchford's new treatment Fiddler of the Opry: The Howdy Forrester Story, available at the website www.howdyforrester.com.
What happened next? Hamper McBee, Cumberland Moonshiner is what. A collection of traditional and new ballads sung by the infamous balladeer and moonshiner of Altamont, Tennesee.
In 2010 Spring Fed took a small turn. With the addition of the "thousand" series, Spring Fed expanded its roster to include working musicians like Bruce Nemerov and the Tennessee Mafia Jug Band who have great respect for folk and traditional music and who draw deeply from folk music's heritage. The first release in the series, Nemerov's Zeno Dreamed is a delight. In 2010 Spring Fed also completed its first folk music field study. Nemerov and Evan Hatch recorded modern gospel music in Middle Tennessee performed by varied groups of musicians. The result, I'm Believing: Gospel Music in Middle Tennessee, is now available.
Its a new decade, and Spring Fed is still hard at work. We are working with the Delta Blues Foundation, Inc. to produce Discovery: The Rebirth of Mississippi John Hurt, previously unissued field recordings from 1963. We keep growing. Keep preserving. And keep producing. We'll keep working hard to bring you the best music we can. Keep checking back to see what else is up our sleeve.