And we are once again giving away a free download from this newest volume. Yes, even though we are practically giving away the full album for only $5.99 (Note: with all proceeds going to NOLA) we are also giving away completely free download tracks at no cost. Last week Amoeba gave away a free download copy of "Shallow Water" by The Young Guardians of The Flame off Vol 1, and this week we are offering for free download a copy of "Down by the Riverside" by Washboard Chaz.
This weekend, between studio sessions, I caught up again with Fabian to ask him specifically about these two free download tracks from the Sacred Ground Volumes 1 and 2 in the six-part Congo Square Project Foundation series being sold exclusively by Amoeba Music. Regarding the free download being launched this week, "Down by the Riverside" by Washboard Chaz, Fabian notes that this traditional gospel song, that was first published almost a full century ago but written many years before that, has also gone by such other titles as "Gonna Lay Down My Burden" and "Ain't Gonna Study War No More" and been recorded numerous times over the years by various artists. "One night I was walking the streets of New Orleans taking musical Polaroids, trying to do my best Alan Lomax impersonation, when I heard the colorful Washboard Chaz play his rendition of this Black gospel plantation classic singing, "I ain't go study war no more, study war no more, ain't go study oh war no more. Gonna lay down my sword and shield. Down by the riverside…" To Fabian these lyrics, sung by a Woody Guthrie type traditionalist, seemed perfectly in tune with the current political/economic climate. "I immediately invited him to come on-board the project," said Fabian, quickly noting how, "[I] wished politicians could learn to sing that wise song too!"