Stephen Collins Foster: America's Bard

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It's hard to imagine American music without Stephen Foster. Many of us grew up singing "Oh, Susannah," "Jeanie With the Light Brown Hair," "Old Folks at Home" — the list goes on and on. With no recorded music in mid-19th century America, the market was all about sheet music and lots of people churned out popular songs. But no other composer of the time wrote as many great songs with as much sticking power as Stephen Foster.

In the words of another great American songwriter (George M. Cohan), Stephen Foster was a Yankee Doodle Dandy, born on the Fourth of July. In celebration of his birth, I've put together an hour-long program of his music. Happy Fourth!