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Bluegrass

The Country Blues – Rob Ickes & Trey Hensley

The Country Blues – Rob Ickes and Trey  Hensley does not make me Blue!!

Rob Ickes and Trey HensleyOver the past week The Country Blues the latest release from Rob Ickes and Trey Hensley has been in my music rotation. To say I am a happy camper is putting in mildly! For me possibly the most important part of a musical recording is just that “the music”! Years ago when I started to listen to folk and folk rock albums. I would constantly check out who was playing on the album. Way back then, if I saw  Kenny Buttrey was playing drums. Vasser Clement fiddle or Buddy Emmons  pedal steel on an album. I knew I was in for a good musical experience! Through the years, the dobro has become one of my favorite instruments and Rob Ickes one of my favorite musicians. Man that guy can flat-out pick!

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Twang Tuesday: Hitting the Road with Hot Day at the Zoo

Hot Day at the Zoo – Hitting the Road   ****

The other day as I was searching for the latest release from Larry Keel, I saw a band with an interesting named in the list of Related Artists on the Larry Keel overview page. The name of the band was Hot Day at the Zoo. A band with a name like that deserves to be checked out!! When I arrived at the band’s page I saw that their latest album Hitting the Road was released in 2015 and their 2010 release was titled  Zoograss (seems like another plus to me!). In addition two bands whose music I really like Cornmeal and Hot Buttered Rum are listed as Related Artists!! Yeah I think I’m going to like these guys!!

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Tiger Maple String Band – Coming Home

This morning I was in need of a little pick-me up and I turned to some old-time bluegrass music. I listened to the Tiger Maple String Band, a band that I discovered on the Roots Music Report’s Bluegrass Chart back in December of 2012. Their album  hit the spot! I particularly love the instrumentals! Here’s the post I wrote about the band back then, It was originally posted at Me, Myself, Music and Mysteries…..

Tiger Maple String Band Playing Old-Time Music Since 1999

So last night I was checking out the Roots Music Report for some new music, and there at No 45 sat a band named Tiger Maple String Band. Their name looked interesting. I usually like bands with String Band in their name because that evokes in me thought of old timey music and tthat’s what I heard when I gave their recent release Coming Home a listen. I recognized a couple of old Appalachian standards mixed in with some great instrumentals. I love those instrumentals Here’s what they say about their music – from their website:!

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Hot Rize – When I’m Free

Note to Hot Rize: 24 yrs between albums is too long!!

When I started to listen to a lot of music and collecting CDs, thanks to the used CD bins at Tunes in Marlton, in the early 2000s,  I found the music of Tim O’Brien, an amazing multi-instrumentalist and singer.  I also discovered the music of guitarist Charles Sawtelle. It took a while before I stumbled upon a great bluegrass album So Long a Journey (2002)  from the band Hot Rize. I discovered that both O’Brien and Sawtelle were members of the band, along with  Pete Wernick, and Nick Forster. Subsequently, I discovered that the album was a live album that had been recorded in 1996 and was a reunion album of  the band, that had retired in 1990. In 1990, the members had parted ways and went on to have distinguished solo careers. From their biography at the band’s website.

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“Into the Morning” with Two Bluegrass Masters – Jim Hurst and Rob Ickes – “Going Down that Road Feeling Bad”

This afternoon I was listening to the latest release from Breaking Grass Just as Strong, after listening for a while, I went and found a video of the band seems that the band has everything I like fiddle, guitar, mandolin, banjo, and bass, wait! There’s no dobro! But I listened anyway and they are a damn fine band without the dobro and I will listen to Just as Strong a few more times before I write about it…. but thinking about the dobro got me thinking about Rob Ickes, and then I came across this post and thought I’d post it again!!!

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“Into the Morning” with the progressive bluegrass of Greensky Bluegrass – “Demons”

One of the albums that has been in my rotation since it’s release last week, is If Sorrow Swims from Greensky Bluegrass. GreenskyIf Sorrow Swims Bluegrass is one of my favorite progressive bluegrass bands. I discovered their music a few years back and loved the album Live at Bells,  on that album the band really displays their musicianship. I liked their last album Handguns, but not as much as the earlier albums. If Sorrow Swims reminds me more of their earlier albums. Here’s a statement from the band’s website about the band…

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High Marks for The High 48s’ Great Northern Railroad – Check them out!!

Yesterday, I was reviewing the Roots Music Bluegrass Chart and way down near the bottom, I came across a band whose

Great norhern Railroad 2name  was unfamiliar with, The High 48s. Their latest release Great Northern Railroad was fittingly #48 on the chart. Since the album obviously had a train song on it, I thought it would be a good album to check out!! So I headed over to Spotify, found the album, listened to a few of the songs, and since my foot hadn’t stopped tapping since the album began, I knew this one was a winner!!

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“Into the Night” with Tony Rice and Friends on Tony’s 63rd Birthday!! (video)

Also celebrating his birthday today, born on June 8th is the great musician Tony Rice. Tony was born just a few months before me in the year of 1951. Tony Rice is a great guitarist whose solo work and work with brother Larry, Chris Hillman and Herb Pederson (Rice,Rice,Hillman &Pedersen) appear in my library! Here's some background for those of you who don't know Tony. From Wikipedia:

Life’s Soundtrack – A Busy Work Day in the Pines Music by Old Buck!

In the PinesToday I was in the Pines of South Jersey testing concrete that’s being used in the re-construction of the spillway, for the dam at the upper lake at Camp Inawendiwin Tabernacle, NJ. So I thought it only fitting that the soundtrack to the site should have a little twang to it. The band I chose for the ride to the site is a new band with an “old name and music type – Old Buck from  Walkertown, NC  and they play some mean old timey music. On their Facebook page they describe their music as “kickin’ stringband fiddle music and songs. kick ass, cookin’, and flat out“.

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Today in Music – Happy Birthday Laurie Lewis!!

Laurie Lewis

Born on this day in 1950, is a musician that  often gets overlooked in my music library (my bad!) Laurie Lewis. I know there’s been times when the iPod is on shuffle and one of her songs comes on and I say hey that’s great, but that the next time I’m looking for something to listen to, I scroll right past the Ls! So today let’s says “Happy Birthday, Laurie and thanks for all the years you’ve given the bluegrass scene great music!

Laurie was born in Long Beach, California and her career has spanned 30 years in which she has released 18 albums. According to Wikipedia she fell in love with Folk Music as a teenager in the late 1969s, first catching the “folk bug” and the Berekley Folk Festivals.

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