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O Brother, Where Art Thou?

Various Artists  Main Performer

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  • Audio Compact Disc [10th Anniversary Deluxe Edition]   $23.88
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1 Po' Lazarus Carter 4:31
2 Big Rock Candy Mountain McClintock 2:16
3 You Are My Sunshine Davis/Mitchell 4:26
4 Down to the River to Pray Traditional 2:55
5 Man of Constant Sorrow Traditional 4:16
6 Hard Time Killing Floor Blues James 2:42
7 Keep On the Sunny Side Carter/Garett 3:33
7 Man of Constant Sorrow [Instrumental] Traditional 4:28
9 I'll Fly Away Brumley 3:57
10 Didn't Leave Nobody But the Baby Burnett/Welch 1:57
11 In the Highways Carter 1:35
12 I Am Weary, Let Me Rest Roberts 3:13
13 Man of Constant Sorrow [Instrumental] Traditional 2:34
14 Man of Constant Sorrow [Band Version][Take] Traditional 4:16
14 O Death Traditional 3:19
15 In the Jailhouse Now Rodgers 3:34
17 Indian War Whoop [Instrumental] Ming 1:30
18 Lonesome Valley Traditional 4:07
19 Angel Band Traditional/York 2:15
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O Brother, Where Art Thou?

Audio Compact Disc [Original Soundtrack]

Label: Mercury

Category: Country

O Brother, Where Art Thou?

UPC: 008817006925

Release Date: 12/05/2000

Original Release Date: 12/05/2000

Number of Discs: 1

Tracks: [Po' Lazarus, Big Rock Candy Mountain, You Are My Sunshine, Down to the River to Pray, Man of Constant Sorrow, Hard Time Killing Floor Blues, Keep On the Sunny Side, Man of Constant Sorrow [Instrumental], I'll Fly Away, Didn't Leave Nobody But the Baby, In the Highways, I Am Weary, Let Me Rest, Man of Constant Sorrow [Instrumental], Man of Constant Sorrow [Band Version][Take], O Death, In the Jailhouse Now, Indian War Whoop [Instrumental], Lonesome Valley, Angel Band]
  • Various Artists  Main Performer 

Evan Cater

The critical consensus at the end of 2000 was that it had been one of the weakest film years in recent memory. Which may have been true, despite O Brother, Where Art Thou?, the Coen brothers' delightfully warm and weird Depression-era re-telling of Homer's Odyssey. But for music lovers, 2000 was an amazing year at the movies, and it produced several excellent soundtrack compilations including Almost Famous, Dancer in the Dark, Wonder Boys, and High Fidelity. Even with such steep competition, the soundtrack album for O Brother, Where Art Thou? may be the best of the year. In order to capture the sound of Mississippi circa 1932, the Coens commissioned T-Bone Burnett, a masterful producer whose work with artists like Elvis Costello, Sam Phillips, Joseph Arthur, and Counting Crows has earned him a special place in the folk-rock hall of fame, to research and re-create the country, bluegrass, folk, gospel, and blues of the era. The Coens were so taken with Burnett's discoveries that the film became a unique sort of musical revue. There are no original compositions here (though Burnett is given a "music by" credit usually reserved for composers), and the characters do not generally break into stylized song and dance numbers (as they do in, say, Everyone Says I Love You). But nearly every scene in O Brother is set to a period song, and the music frequently drives and defines the action. With two exceptions -- a stunning 1955 Alan Lomax recording of a black prison chain gang singing "Po Lazarus", and Harry McClintock's "Big Rock Candy Mountain" -- every song was recorded for the film by an impressive assembly of old-time country veterans (Fairfield Four, Ralph Stanley, the Whites) and talented newcomers (Gillian Welch, Alison Krauss, Emmylou Harris). These recordings, which were made without the meddling clarity of digital technology, give the film much of its power and authenticity. A significant segment of the plot hinges on the (utterly plausible) notion that Dan Tyminksi's ebullient rendition of "I Am a Man of Constant Sorrow" could be a runaway hit. A memorable sequence involving three riverside sirens centers around an eerie version of "Didn't Leave Nobody But the Baby." And Stanley's a cappella performance of "O Death" sets a chilling tone for a climactic struggle at a Ku Klux Klan rally. Throughout, Burnett's steady guiding hand is evident. This soundtrack is a powerful tribute not only to the time-honored but commercially ignored genres of bluegrass and mountain music but also to Burnett's remarkable skills as a producer. ~ Evan Cater, Rovi