Ralph Stanley II signs with new label
Wednesday, September 12, 2007
– After spending his solo recording career with Rebel Records, Ralph Stanley II, son of Ralph, moved to Lonesome Day Records, a Kentucky-based bluegrass label. He is slated to release a new album in early 2008.
"It's going to be a departure from anything he's done before," said Randall Deaton, owner of the label. "We just about have it finished. Everything before as pretty much like his dad did, Clinch Mountain Boys, Appalachian (sounding)."
Deaton said the new CD "is a showcase of him as a singer and the song moreso than the picking. It's got top notch pickers on it. They are there as an ensemble to support him rather than do their individual thing."
Jim Lauderdale, Cody Kilbey, Tim Crouch, Randy Kohrs, Adam Steffey, Ron Stuart, Marty Raybon and Steve Gulley are among the artists giving a hand.
"We're probably looking at March, April of next year," said Deaton about a release date.
He said the disc would be "much more contemporary sounding." Songs include Townes Van Zandt's "Loretta," Lyle Lovett's "L.A. County" and Elton John's "Georgia."
Lonesome Day also has artists including Steve Gulley and Larry Cordle.
More news for Ralph Stanley II
CD reviews for Ralph Stanley II
The name of Ralph Stanley conjures up images of mountain bluegrass. However, this CD is more in the country vein. Ralph Stanley II delivers his vocals in a smoky baritone more reminiscent of modern country than the high lonesome sound on his first album since 2002's "Stanley Blues." Not that Ralph II ignores his roots. With bluegrass standouts like Adam Steffey of the Dan Tyminski band, and Cody Kilby and Darren Vincent, (both played with Ricky Skaggs), there is not a weak sideman here. ...
Ralph II, or "Two," as he is sometimes referred to, has been playing with his father from a very young age, but 1989's Like Father, Like Son marked the younger Stanley's first studio recording experience. He is only featured on two cuts, singing lead vocals on a cute version of the Jumpin' Gene Simmons hit, "Haunted House," and lead guitar on the traditional number, "Wildwood Flower," but his presence is foreshadowing for the coming decade when he would take over the guitar and vocalist slot in ...
No, Ralph Stanley II may never be as innovative or well respected as his legendary father. That still should not diminish the fine bluegrass-country albums he is making on his own.
Working in the considerable shadow of his family legacy has always been tough on "Two," but his constant references to it don't help. For starters, there is the title track, "Stanley Blues," co-written with his banjo player, Steve Sparkman. Daddy himself shows up on tenor vocals for two songs, and the songwriting ...