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Murphey, Parmley, Thacker, Kaukonen top new releases

Tuesday, February 10, 2009 – Bluegrass rules today in terms of new releases with three of the four discs being bluegrass.

Michael Martin Murphey is best known for cowboy music after doing country songs. "Buckaroo Blue Grass" (Rural Rhythm) is his first bluegrass disc, although there is a country bent to the music. Murphey's songs have been recorded by Flatt and Scruggs, Doyle Lawson and Quicksilver, Seldom Scene, Country Gentlemen, Bluegrass Cardinals and the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band. Those helping out Murphey on his new disc are Rhonda Vincent on backing vocals and Sam Bush on mandolin.

David Parmley & Continental Divide release "3 Silver Dollars" (Pinecastle), his first album in about three years. Parmley self-produced the disc. The Divide includes one new band member, Ron Spears, who played with Special Consensus and Doyle Lawson. Parmley was a founding member of the Bluegrass Cardinals.

Ernie Thacker makes his Pinecastle debut with "The Hangman." Thacker was a member of Ralph Stanley's group for six years before heading out on his own. This marks Thacker's first release since a car accident left him paralyzed two years ago.

Rock & Roll Hall of Famer Jorma Kaukonen offers a rootsy, bluesy sounding CD, "River of Time" (Red House). The former member of Jefferson Airplane and Hot Tuna covers the Grateful Dead's Operator and Been So Long and Merle Haggard's More Than My Old Guitar.

Editorial: Walking the talk – When names like Hank Williams, Johnny Cash, Waylon and the Hag are invoked, you're talking hard core country. These are the touchstones of country , the guys who made country music what it was and still is (or maybe can be). When these folks would sing about being down-and-out and the rough-and-tumble, they knew of what they were singing about. Fast forward a few years to the country singers of today. »»»
Concert Review: Gayle, Orlando provide good old-fashioned entertainment – Although this pairing of country star Crystal Gayle and Tony Orlando may have - on the surface - appeared to be an odd one, tonight's audience demonstratively loved each performer equally. It was an evening of memorable songs, fun and funny stories and just good old-fashioned entertainment. Gayle opened the show with a strong set of country... »»»
Concert Review: With or without band, Isbell satisfies – Usually, when an artist performs without his regular backing band, it becomes about mathematics of subtraction. That artist is armed with far fewer artistic weapons at his/her disposal, after all. In Jason Isbell's case, though, when he performed with just his wife and fiddler Amanda Shires, it was more about substitution than subtraction.... »»»
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