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Famous Brother John Mitchum Recorded a Folk Album With 'Bonanza's' Dan Blocker

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One of the great American television stars of his time, Bonanza's Dan Blocker, recorded an overlooked folk album with another beloved actor, John Mitchum.

Our Land-- Our Heritage teamed Hoss from the Ponderosa with a member of the multi-talented Mitchum family. The big budget production from 1964 tells the stories of America, from California to the New York island, and its folk songs.

Blocker narrates the storytelling segments, while John holds his own as a seasoned poet and folk singer. For a taste of the album, check out the duo's rendition of a minstrel song from the 1800s, "Roll Out, Heave That Cotton!"

While Blocker needs no introduction, a primer about John Mitchum is needed to define him as more than a famous person's brother.

John, the younger sibling of Julie and Robert Mitchum, had his own lengthy career in Hollywood.

The Bridgeport, Connecticut native is best known for his roles in several Clint Eastwood films: Paint Your Wagon (1969), Dirty Harry (1971), High Plains Drifter (1973), Magnum Force (1973), The Outlaw Josey Wales (1976) and The Enforcer (1976).

John also appeared in multiple John Wayne movies: El Dorado (1966), Chisum (1970), Rio Lobo (1970), and Big Jake (1971). The Chisum connection helped land John Mitchum's poem "Why I Love Her" on Wayne's album America, Why I Love Her.

Other big screen Westerns listed on John's IMDB page include Kurt Russell's The Way West (1967), Dean Martin's Bandolero! (1968) as well as Cattle King (1963) and Cole Younger, Gunfighter (1958).

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Additional work for John came as a character actor on television (F-Troop (as Hoffenmueller), Laramie, Rawhide, The Munsters, Riverboat, Batman, Bewitched, Little House on the Prairie, Perry Mason, Gunsmoke, The Twilight Zone, The Virginian, Bonanza, The Waltons) and on the big screen (from The Lusty Men with his brother Robert to Pipe Dreams with Gladys Knight).

Other filmography selections for John range from an uncredited appearance in 1951's Flying Leathernecks and a role as Hermann Goering in the 1962 docu-drama Hitler to b-movie Bigfoot (1970) and Charles Bronson thrillers Breakheart Pass (1975) and Telefon (1977).

His final role came alongside his brother Robert in the 1989 TV film Jake Spanner, Private Eye.

John died in Los Angeles on November 29, 2001, after complications of three strokes. He was 82.

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Famous Brother John Mitchum Recorded a Folk Album With 'Bonanza's' Dan Blocker