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Glen Bonham (Scena, 2003)

Glen Bonham

Reviewed by John Lupton

Oklahoma native Glen Bonham, son of an English father and a Choctaw mother, may be familiar to some TV viewers for his recurring role as the Indian dancer in Chuck Norris' dream sequences in "Walker: Texas Ranger." Turns out, though, his resume also includes musical associations with the likes of Ricky Skaggs, Buck White, Joe Diffie and longtime Oklahoma bluegrass icon Bill Grant in a career that, minus a four-year stint in the Marines, encompasses more than three decades.

For this solo debut, he shows off a rich, resonant voice that comfortably straddles bluegrass and classic country as he takes on familiar favorites like "Free Born Man," "Today I Started Loving You Again," "You Don't Know My Mind" and "Fraulein." Chestnuts they may be, but Bonham breathes new life into them in a way that should satisfy bluegrassers and honky tonkers alike - sorta like if Alan Jackson took a crack at singing bluegrass. "Mr. Homeless" also demonstrates more than a little songwriting talent. With a first-rate backup cast that includes Glen Duncan, Pat Flynn and Rob Ickes among others, this disc is a real pleasant surprise.

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