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Various Artists

Freight Train Boogie A Collection of Americana Music – 2000 (Jackalope)

Reviewed by Brian Baker

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Freight Train Boogie is one of those great compilations that makes you feel good twice - once because the music's great and once because it's a benefit album. Proceeds help support KRCB-FM in Santa Rosa, Cal., an NPR station that hosts the Freight Train Boogie radio show hosted by Bill Frater and Doug Jayne.

Frater and Jayne have compiled a sampler platter that hints at the kind of sonic texture they program, and it's as wide-ranging as the definition of Americana itself. Incorporating everything from rocking alt.-country to bluegrass to folk, this features a number of higher profile and lesser known artists, the former to help sell the disc and the latter to help promote the artists, the show and the genre.

There are a handful of unreleased tracks to entice collectors (including Stacey Earle, Duane Jarvis and Mike Ireland), and some really nice surprises among the unknowns (particularly the Lloyd Maines-produced "Northern Lights" from Anna Fermin's Trigger Gospel, and the Bottlerockets/Old 97s swagger of the Baseboard Heaters' "Roll the Dice"). Besides, how often do you get a chance to feel good while doing good? (3385 Dartmouth Dr., Santa Rosa, CA 95405, Freight Train Boogie)