Chris Jones - Lost Souls & Free Spirits The Rebel Collection Old & New
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Lost Souls & Free Spirits The Rebel Collection Old & New (Rebel, 2012)

Chris Jones

Reviewed by Larry Stephens

Chris Jones & The Night Drivers disc is an anthology with 4 songs from previous releases dating back to 1997 plus 3 new songs. It features a plethora of excellent pickers including Ron Block, Ron Stewart, Darrin Vincent and Rob Ickes as well as the current Night Drivers: Mark Stoffel on mandolin, Jon Weisberger (bass), fellow satellite radio broadcaster Ned Luberecki (banjo) and Jones playing guitar.

An old Delmore Brothers song, Nashville Blues, from a 1998 album is kicked off by mandolin, reminiscent of the Delmore guitar kick before swinging into full bluegrass mode. Whispering Now, a Louvin Brothers song, features a simple arrangement, just Jones on guitar and Jesse Brock on mandolin with a four-person backup on the vocals. This is an excellent interpretation of a great gospel number.

Jones shows his country side with Johnny Duncan's I'd Rather Love You. Tom T and Dixie Hall contribute two songs here. Tom T is a storyteller and the story told in A Hero In Harlan is one of pathos that is repeated so often these days: the return of a soldier killed in war. The arrangement is very good for this song, and Jones offers a great delivery. The Man On The Side of the Road is another story, another good arrangement and the plus of Tom T singing on it.

It makes no difference if the song is older, like Bridge To Portsmouth, or new - Final Farewell - Jones and his band show their style and polish. They make for good listening.

CDs by Chris Jones

Made to Move, 2017 Run Away Tonight, 2015 Live at the Old Feed Store, 2014 Lonely Come Easy, 2013 Lost Souls & Free Spirits The Rebel Collection Old & New, 2012 Too Far Down the Road, 2006

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