SOURCE: Sugar Hill Records

July 27, 2006 11:21 ET

Sugar Hill Records Presents Retrospective Box Set on September 12, 2006

Four-Disc Set of 81 Tracks Covers First 25 Years of Label's Legacy

NASHVILLE, TN -- (MARKET WIRE) -- July 27, 2006 --As Barry Poss tells it, when he started Sugar Hill Records in the summer of 1978 out of his North Carolina-based apartment, he had to fabricate names of non-existent staff members in a Billboard interview so he wouldn't look like a "nobody operation." Now, Poss has handpicked 81 tracks for "Sugar Hill: A Retrospective," a collection that illuminates 25 years of award-winning contributions to American roots music, and the evolution of a label that once had only Poss to answer the phone in a fake-receptionist's falsetto.

The box set, to be released on September 12, includes four discs of 81 songs and a bonus DVD with artist interviews, videos and photo gallery. There are generous liner notes by Poss, which read like a warm and often humorous mini-novel. Not only are there anecdotes for each song selected, but insights into each of the artists who shaped Sugar Hill's legacy including Ricky Skaggs, Boone Creek, Doc Watson, Guy Clark, Townes Van Zandt, Tony Rice, Robert Earl Keen, The Osborne Brothers, Jerry Douglas, Peter Rowan, Nickel Creek and Dolly Parton to name just a few. (Complete track listing available:

As Poss reveals in the liner notes, selecting the songs wasn't a simple culling of the label's "best of," or even the "overlooked gems." Instead, it is a personal illustration of the authentic music that compelled him to start the label.

"I did not intend for Sugar Hill to be all things to all people. I wanted it to make a statement, to stand for something, to have a signature sound, much like Sun Records of the 1950s, where you might not know the artist but you trusted the label. We started with bluegrass, but Sugar Hill was never strictly a bluegrass label, nor strictly country, nor singer-songwriter, nor any other genre. The label's focus would come from my own passion for contemporary music rooted in tradition in some way. That mantra has guided Sugar Hill for all these years," said Poss.

Indeed, that mantra has guided the prestigious record label to present. As historian Jay Orr states in the liner notes, "Poss was to contemporary, roots-based music in the last quarter of the twentieth century what Ahmet Ertegun and the Chesses and Phillips were to pop music a quarter-century earlier -- the founder of a quality music label, a label that consumers came to trust on its own merits. Most of his bicentennial competitors have fallen away, but Poss and Sugar Hill continue to thrive."

Twenty-five years and counting, Sugar Hill maintains the tradition of integrity and quality, even as it explores new frontiers in music. Since 1998, the label has partnered with the likeminded Welk Music Group. Today, the eclectic Sugar Hill roster includes adventurous artists such as Nickel Creek, The Duhks, Sonny Landreth, Scott Miller and Sam Bush, as well as award-winning traditionalists like Dolly Parton and Tim O'Brien.

Complete liner notes and artwork on the Hard copies available on request. Limited number of complete sets available. Please email your request to, or call 615-297-6890.

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