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Dust To Digital

John Fahey 'Your Past Comes Back To Haunt You (The Fonotone Years 1958-1965)'


Dust To Digital

John Fahey 'Your Past Comes Back To Haunt You (The Fonotone Years 1958-1965)'


● 115 tracks on 5 CDs
● 88 page Hardback Book
● Extensive Notes and Essays
● Never-before-seen Photographs
● A co-release between Dust-to-Digital and Revenant

Oversized, hardback book with Gatefold Portfolio housing 5 CDs inside Slipcase.

More than 10 years in the making, this box set features the earliest recordings and the first book ever written about one of the most influential guitarists from the 1960s and ‘70s, John Fahey.

The five CDs feature 115 tracks, most of which are available on CD for the first time. The audio was remastered from Joe Bussard’s reel-to-reel tapes to achieve pristine sound quality. As for the accompanying book, the list of scholars who contributed essays includes Eddie Dean, Claudio Guerrierri, Glenn Jones, Malcolm Kirton, Mike Stewart and John’s childhood friend R. Anthony Lee. Byron Coley contributed a poem about John, and Douglas Blazek’s 1967 interview with Fahey is published for the first time.

Released 10 years after John Fahey’s death, this set puts one of the final puzzle pieces of Fahey’s career in place. Everyone can now hear where this guitar legend got his start – a smoky basement in Frederick, Maryland. Co-produced by Dean Blackwood of Revenant, Glenn Jones, and Lance Ledbetter of Dust-to-Digital, this set is released with the support of Joe Bussard and the John Fahey Estate.

The set is dedicated to John’s mother, Jane C. Hayes and the late musician Jack Rose.

“...the folk guitar-playing equivalent of William Burroughs or Bukowski. (Fahey) had a real edge to him.” --- Pete Townshend

“His music has that great feeling like in short fiction. It's unpredictable but inevitable. You're surprised but you realize that's how it had to happen, even though the elements are unpredictable. Every note was perfectly placed but unpredictable.” – Dean Blackwood, co-producer of Your Past Comes Back to Haunt You

"John was an essentialist, and the only thing essential to him was his art—his writing and his music—and everything else was just a distraction." – Dean Blackwood, co-producer of Your Past Comes Back to Haunt You

“Fahey was the first to demonstrate that the finger-picking techniques of traditional country and blues steel-string guitar could be used to express a world of non-traditional musical ideas -- harmonies and melodies you'd associate with Bartok, Charles Ives, or maybe the music of India." -- Dr. Demento (Barry Hansen)

"as monumental and singular a musical talent as any this country has produced." – Byron Coley

“Playing a six-string acoustic guitar, Mr. Fahey used country-blues fingerpicking and hymnlike melodies in stately pieces with classical structures. Wordless and unhurried, his music became a contemplation and an elegy, a stoic invocation of American roots, nameless musicians and ancestral memories. Behind its serene surface, the music was both stubborn and haunted.

...From the beginning, he was an iconoclast and a maverick.” -- Jon Pareles, The New York Times

“It is Mr. Fahey's moment as he rides back into view as an avant-garde father figure, whom the guitarist Thurston Moore of Sonic Youth has acknowledged as a ''secret influence.''…Mr. Fahey's music is conceptually slippery: it belongs to no genre. Musicians within folk, neo-acoustic blues, New Age and now, strangely enough, post-everything avant-garde rock have claimed him as an inspiration...he may be best understood in the same category of self-inventing American composers as Charles Ives and Brian Wilson. --Ben Ratliff, The New York Times

“As much as any single person, Fahey advanced a persuasive case that the blues, jazz, and hillbilly performers of the '20s and '30s created the most vital and enduring American music of the past century… Though it began as somewhat of a lark, the Blind Thomas material reveals Fahey the musician already in full bloom, ransacking old blues and country songs for ideas to flesh out his excursions and meditations.” – Eddie Dean

"What attracted me to Fahey's music was that it was solitary — very austere but very emotional." – James Blackshaw.

Disc One:
1. Interview with John Fahey on Fonotone Records and Joe Bussard
2. Franklin Blues
3. Smoketown Strut
4. Steel Guitar Rag
5. Takoma Park Pool Hall Blues
6. Buck Dancer’s Choice
7. Medley: Pretty Polly / Shortnin’ Bread
8. Barbara Namkin Blues
9. In Christ There Is No East or West
10. Stak 'o Lee Blues [Louis Collins]
11. The Transcendental Waterfall
12. John Henry
13. Over The Hill Blues
14. St. Louis Blues
15. On Doing an Evil Deed Blues
16. Reinumeration Blues
17. The Transcendental Waterfall
18. Mississippi Boweavil Blues
19. Green River Blues
20. Over the Hill Blues
21. Libba’s Rag
22. Chris’s Rag

Disc Two: 
1. St. Louis Tickle
2. Pat Sullivan’s Blues
3. Blind Blues [Martin’s Esso Blues]
4. Poor Boy Blues
5. Long Time Town Blues
6. Gulf Port Island Blues
7. Blind Thomas Blues Part 1
8. Blind Thomas Blues Part 2
9. New Newport News Blues #2
10. Wanda Russell’s Blues
11. Going Away to Leave You Blues
12. Lay My Burden Down
13. Hill High Blues
14. John Henry
15. Paint Brush Blues
16. Blind Thomas Blues Part 3
17. Blind Thomas Blues Part 4
18. You Gonna Need Somebody on Your Bond
19. Jesus Gonna Make Up My Dyin’ Bed
20. Banty Rooster Blues
21. Tom Rushen Blues

Disc Three:
1. Yallaboosha River Blues
2. You Gonna Miss Me
3. Wissenschaftlich River Blues Part 1
4. Wissenschaftlich River Blues Part 2
5. Zekiah Swamp Blues
6. Nobody’s Business
7. Going Crabbing Talking Blues Part 1
8. Going Crabbing Talking Blues Part 2
9. You Better Get Right So God Can Use You
10. Weissman Blues
11. Dasein River Blues
12. Racemic Tartrate River Blues Part 1
13. Racemic Tartrate River Blues Part 2  
14. Smoky Ordinary Blues [Dance of the Inhabitants]
15. I Shall Not Be Moved
16. Old Country Rock
17. Little Hat Blues  
18. Guitar Solo Title Unknown [Revelation on the Banks of the Pawtuxent]
19. Guitar Solo Title Unknown [Night Train to Valhalla]
20. Some Summer Day
21. The Langley Two-Step
22. Dream of the Origin of the French Broad River

Disc Four:
1. Saint John’s Hornpipe
2. Sail Away Ladies
3. Dreaming Under the B & O Trestle
4. 900 Miles
5. Prince George’s Dance
6. Improvisation for Flute and Guitar
7. Dorothy / Calvert Street Blues [Brenda’s Blues]
8. Brenda’s Blues
9. Buck Dancer’s Choice
10. Night Train to Valhalla
11. In the Pines
12. Pretty Polly
13. Take This Hammer
14. Yazoo Basin Blues
15. Stomping Tonight on the (Old) Pennsylvania / Alabama Border
16. Smoky Ordinary Blues [Dance of the Inhabitants]
17. Revelation on the Banks of the Pawtuxent
18. Bean Vine Blues [Pea Vine Blues]
19. Green Blues
20. Stone Pony

Disc Five:
1. Dorothy / Calvert Street Blues [Brenda’s Blues]
2. Days Have Gone By
3. Some Summer Day
4. Texas & Pacific Blues [My Bucket’s Got a Hole In It]
5. John Henry Blues
6. Brenda’s Blues
7. St. Patrick’s Hymn
8. Bicycle Built for Two
9. The Blues You Saved For Me
10. House Carpenter
11. How Long
12. The Portland Cement Factory at Monolith, California
13. You Take The E Train [The Last Steam Engine Train]
14. I Sing a Song of the Saints of God
15. How Long
16. O Jesus I Have Promised
17. Untitled
18. Medley: Untitled / O Jesus I Have Promised
19. I Am a Rake and Rambling Boy
20. Medley: Goodbye Old Paint / Whoopee Ti-Yi-Yo, Git Along Little Doggies
21. Goodbye Old Paint
22. Simple Gifts
23. Untitled
24. Bury Me Not On the Lone Prairie
25. Goodbye Old Paint
26. Western Medley
27. Durgan Park
28. The Bitter Lemon
29. Old Southern Medley (Fragment)
30. Bottleneck Blues