Jeremy Garrett - Circles
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Circles (Organic, 2020)

Jeremy Garrett

Reviewed by Robert Wooldridge

The fourth solo release from the Infamous Stringdusters' Jeremy Garrett reveals the acclaimed fiddler to be effectively a one man show with his guitar and mandolin skills also on display. The expected bluegrass influence is in evidence along with touches of folk and progressive rock augmented by looping.

The bluegrass roots are most prominent on the opening "I Am Who I Am" (co-written with Oliver Wood) in which Garrett laments some of the gambles he's taken in life that didn't pan out ("Almost all the dogs have crossed the finish line/The one I bet on he's just taking his sweet time") and features Josh Schilling (clavinet) playing the only instrument not performed by Garrett. The thoughtful collaboration with Darrell Scott "What Would We Find" ("Endless horizon and I see no end in sight/I'm a shadow in the morning/I'm a lighter of the night") spotlights some of Garrett's signature fiddle work, as does the uptempo "Travel Light" (co-written with Jon Weisberger) with Garrett's soulful vocal supported only by a ferocious solo fiddle.

There are some potent instrumentals including the traditional "Baker's Jam" and the psychedelic "Oracle" reminiscent of Pink Floyd. The title track (co-written with Donna Ulisse) would have also fit nicely on '70s FM radio.

The only disappointing element of this effort is that its eight tunes clock in at under 32 minutes, but with Garrett's strong vocals, impressive multi-instrumental skills and solid compositions "Circles" succeeds despite its brevity.

CDs by Jeremy Garrett

Circles, 2020 I Am a Stranger, 2009

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