Reviews

Review: Carlene Carter - Carter Girl

I have an unerring fascination with the Carter Family—or more precisely the Original Carter Family—because everything about their professional lives as musicians (or “musicianers” as AP would say) is as exotic as it is unfathomable. We all know at least the outline of the story: AP hears Sara’s voice and falls in love, convinces Sara and Maybelle to drive with him to Bristol to record, despite the fact that there were no paved roads and Maybelle was nine months pregnant. Late, tired, hungry, they sit in front of a recording horn and, on the first day, record “Bury Me Beneath the Willow,” and, among other things, “The Storms are on the Ocean.” The next day they record “Single Girl, Married Girl,” and “The Wandering Boy.” In all they recorded just six songs at those sessions, and four of which became part of the very fabric of Americana music.

Review: Marty Raybon & Full Circle - The Back Forty

Marty Raybon has been performing as a singer for over 40 years, but I had not heard his music until this 2013 release with Full Circle called The Back Forty. Perhaps the unfamiliarity is because Raybon has mainly produced music in the country music vein, with some of his material crossing over into bluegrass. By his own admission, The Back Forty is his most fully realized bluegrass effort of his long career, and was inspired by his interest in dedicating a full album’s worth of material to a music style that he has loved since his childhood.

Review: The Expedition Show - Stormy Horizons

New expeditions of discovery and exploration are frequently marred by bad weather, uncertainty, disease and a breakdown of the human condition. Not so with the latest exciting release from The Expedition Show! May of 2013 brought the listening community Stormy Horizons and the only fever in evidence is a welcome one in the form of Mountain Fever Records, the recording studio and label for the release. With nothing to prove and everything to share, Blake Williams on banjo, Kimberly Williams on vocals and bass, Wayne Southards on vocals and guitar and Alex Hibbitts on vocals and mandolin, supported by Tim Crouch on fiddle and Phil Leadbetter on dobro bring us 12 exquisitely performed and recorded tracks solidly rooted in Bluegrass with a touch of swing, occasional gospel and the Blues.

Review: Rhonda Vincent - Only Me

 

I was once helping with a satellite feed of the Kruger Brothers early one morning at Merlefest—the local television station was airing live segments from a hill overlooking the festival grounds—and Rhonda Vincent was the next up. The only problem was that her bus driver had gotten lost and wasn’t answering the phone. All the organizers were frantic, which was kind of funny, you know, having lost Rhonda Vincent and all. I noted that I had seen the bus in another parking lot on the way up, and they sent someone off running to set things right.

Review: Lonely Heartstring Band House Concert

Feb 1, 2014, Rhinebeck, NY
Presented by The Hudson Valley Bluegrass Association
Fred Robbins, Videographer

 

Just over a month has passed since the Haas, Walsh and Marshall house concert was presented by the HVBA in Rhinebeck under Lyn Rosen’s welcoming roof. This weekend she hosted Boston’s Beatle-inspired bluegrass group The Lonely Heartstring Band to an enthusiastic audience on Saturday night.

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