Mark Twain: Words & Music is a double-CD with a 40-page booklet of linernotes telling Twain's life in spoken word in song. Voices on this projectinclude Jimmy Buffett (as Huck Finn), Garrison Keillor (as the narrator),Clint Eastwood (as Mark Twain), and Angela Lovell (as Susy Clemens). Thereare 14 story segments and 13 corresponding songs performed by EmmylouHarris, Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver, Rhonda Vincent, Bradley Walker, CarlJackson, The Church Sisters, Sheryl Crow, Brad Paisley, Marty Raybon, ValStorey, Vince Gill, Joe Diffie and Ricky Skaggs. Grammy Award-winner CarlJackson produced the project as a benefit for the Mark Twain Boyhood Home &Museum in Hannibal, Missouri to commemorate 2010, the 100th anniversary of Twain's death.
Mark Twain's Boyhood Home and Museum in Hannibal has released a celebration of Twain's life and work that, if a bit muted and careful, is a pleasing journey through the world of Twain, author of the greatest novel in the American literary canon, Huckleberry Finn, a novel whose themes of class, race, and freedom continue to be central concerns of 21st century America. Narrated by Garrison Keillor, with Clint Eastwood providing the voice of Twain and Jimmy Buffett giving voice to Huck Finn, and music contributions from country and bluegrass musicians Emmylou Harris, Doyle Lawson, Rhonda Vincent, Brad Paisley, Vince Gill, Ricky Skaggs, and lone pop participant Sheryl Crow, it all adds up to a scrubbed-up and shiny version of Twain's life and thoughts, many of which still sound wise and astute in a contemporary America that Twain undoubtedly would have recognized from his own. ~ Steve Leggett, Rovi