Early American Dances (78 RPM)

Early American Dances (78 RPM)

Recently I purchased a couple of boxes of shellac records, most of which are 78 RPM. When I found this one, I knew I had to start with it. The rest were made by record companies I still know the names of, and while I know this company’s name, it is for something entirely different.

Henry Ford was a villain. He was a racist antisemite. He was also interested in American culture, which he took to be white culture because he was a bad person, but he had money and interest and that often leads to results. In this case, the result is a shellac 78 RPM record by the Ford Orchestra, featuring two American folk dance songs “reviewed by Mr. and Mrs. Henry Ford.” It was recorded at the Ford Engineering Laboratory in Dearborn, Michigan. Its catelogue number is 118.

Early American Dances as reviewed by Mr. and Mrs. Henry Ford (B Side)
Early American Dances as reviewed by Mr. and Mrs. Henry Ford (B Side)

Side A
Fireman’s Dance (Circle Quadrille)

Side B
Money Musk (Contredanse) (Without Calls)

Unhappily I have very little to say about the actual music. Many of the records in the boxes were in good shape and well taken care of, but whoever stored this one must have felt about it the way I feel about Mr. Ford. This recording is from the ’40s and it shows. Beyond that, I am ignorant of this sort of music. It is an interesting novelty to me, but little more.

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