The winner is Todd Evans
Additional Bowden Comments
Good job Todd. Every bluegrass fan should recognize “Rounder 0044” in an instant. The ONLY commercial recording (barring one LP from their Japanese tour, issued only in Japan for years) by this landmark band. They were together only for a year, before Ricky and Jerry split off for Nashville sidemen jobs, and Tony headed west into the David Grisman “Dawg music” world.
The song selection on this LP would nowadays be linked to “newgrass”, coming from rock ‘n’ roll, rhythm & blues, Lightfoot, a little Flatt & Scruggs etc. It is HOT, hard-charging bluegrass all the way however. Absolutely GREAT pickin’ and singin’. This LP made “The Old Home Place” a bluegrass standard.
And yes, for God knows what reason Crowe chose to show the photographer the bird, because of his demands for different poses in those trees. After the fowl deed was noticed and commented on in the bluegrass world, even in a letter to Bluegrass Unlimited, Rounder used a completely different band photo for the next printing. The original covers became “coveted” items.
Allison Krauss records for Rounder, but not 0044..
Joe Val recorded for Rounder, but not 0044.
Rounder’s very first bluegrass record was 003, Joe Val and the New England Bluegrass Boys, a few years earlier.
“The Bluegrass Album” band included Crowe and Tony Rice (along with Doyle Lawson, Bobby Hicks and Todd Phillips, Rounder 0140. Rounder originally intended it as a Tony Rice album of some sort of bluegrass or Spacegrass (Tony’s name for his music), but Tony on a whim called Crowe and said we need to make a record of the historical foundations of bluegrass for the kids to get a listen to the stuff we grew up on. Doyle Lawson had worked in Crowe’s band in the 1960s so he got the call for mandolin. Bobby Hicks had just returned to Nashville from the Las Vegas lounge music world, so he got the call for fiddle. Todd Phillips had played on Tony’s records for 5 years, so got the call for bass.
The Bluegrass Album was a HIT!! On their first tour supporting the LP they played Boston in the dead of winter, I guess around 1981 or 82. My sister and I got a carload of friends together and traveled down from Maine to see the concert, and out tickets included meeting the band at a “champagne reception”!! I remember we drove home that night, way after midnight, in a driving snowstorm.
Notice the presence of Rounder in all the potential answers? Rounder has been very important to bluegrass!