Caskets in the Cornfield
Bucky Halker has been collecting folk and labor protest songs for decades and produced the critically acclaimed 'Folksongs of Illinois' CD series in 2007 for the University of Illinois Press. While doing research on Illinois he noticed an awful lot of songs of death, disaster, and dying, giving a kind of 'folksong noir' quality to much of the state's folk music. He couldn't resist the fun of recording a batch. The goal was to keep it simple and live. Bucky and his long-time musical pals Don Stiernberg (mandolin) and Tom Piekarski (bass)--the Johnsburg 3--rehearsed an afternoon and recorded twelve songs in a single studio session late in 2008. The result was a very live, no frills, low-fi recording by a very skilled trio doing folk songs of death in a unique and distinctive style, with a bit of irony and tongue-in-cheek to keep us laughing at death. They call their music and this CD the birth of a new genre---death folk. Who'd've thought death could be so musically enjoyable! Each CD cover was individually printed on a hand letter press. The covers are made of recycled paper.