So I listened to a lot of bluegrass today. I started the day with XM Radio Bluegrass Junction and on the way to work I heard a song by Steve Gulley and I thought about the new album that I read about the day that he did with Tim Stafford. So I went to Rhapsody to look for it but they didn’t have it, actually, I don’t know if it has even been released yet. Anyway they did have other albums so I listened to Tim Stafford’s album Endless Line and then Steve Gulley’s album Sounds Like Home. Both albums were very good listens from two of bluegrass’ best! Tim Stafford was a founding member of Blue Highway, whose first album won IBMA’s Album of the Year Award in 1996. In the February 2010 edition of Acoustic Guitar magazine Endless Line was named one of the best Acoustic Guitar Albums of the last 20 years! and says that Tim Stafford is ‘…possibly the most influential guitarist in contemporary bluegrass.’. Other albums that were on the list that Tim appeared or worked on includes: Blue Highway’s Midnight Storm, Michelle Shocked’s Arkansas Traveler, Alison Krauss’s Now That I’ve Found You, and The Infamous Stringduster’s Fork in the Road.
After these albums was the Oscar Peterson interlude followed by an album I put on the player a while ago Tim Hensley’s album Long Monday. Tim Hensley has had extensive tenures with Ricky Skaggs, Patty Loveless and Kenny Chesney. Long Monday is his first solo album. I really thought that the opening lines from the title track were exceptional The lyrics include: You and me, Sittin’ in the back my memory, Like a honey bee, Buzzin’ ’round a glass of sweet Chablis.Well they should be great because the song is from John Prine and his album Fair & Square. (Note to self listen again to Fair & Square). Anyway the album is pretty good has a few more Gospel songs than I really like but overall it was good.
Next I listened to the home_page.html”>Kathy Kallick Band. Their new album Between The Hollow And The High-Rise,
was number 2 last month on the Folk DJ List. Rhapsody didn’t have the new album so I listened to their 2005 release Warmer Kind Of Blue. I have heard the band before from the album Whitewater: A Copper Creek Anthologythat I picked up a few years ago. Anyway it was another good listen with a lot of good picking from this band that hails from San Francisco. The band is composed of:
Kathy Kallick: guitar, lead vocals, harmony vocals
Tom Bekeny: mandolin, harmony & lead vocals
Dan Booth: acoustic bass, harmony & lead vocals
Greg Booth: dobro, banjo, harmony vocals
Annie Staninec: fiddle, harmony vocals
And like I said they can all play! So check them out!
The final album that I listened to briefly today was the new release by Tim O’Brien Chicken and Egg Tim is a favorite of mine whether it’s solo, with his old group Hot Rize, or playing on someone else’s album Tim’s playiing is always great! It some point I am going to write a complete review for this album. But for now I’ll just say give it a listen! It’s good stuff! The funny thing that happened today was that when I was in the car listening to Tom’s album I had the XM Radio unplugged but still on and tuned to Bluegrass Junction. When I pulled up to my work Tim’s song Gonna Try to Make Her Stay was on my player, when I looked down at the XM Radio the same song was playing!!
So it was a day filled with a lot of great bluegrass!
Here;s Tim Stafford and Rob Ickes with Woody Guthrie’s “Pretty Boy Floyd”