Welcome to my Blog. I write primarily about bluegrass music and the bluegrass experience. I also review books I read as well as offering road notes and travel entries. Come in and look around to see whether there's anything here for you. Be sure to check the archives and the labels. Please leave comments. I try to respond to all of them.
Thursday, July 24, 2008
MACC Weds - It Doesn't Get Any Better
Musicians Against Childhood Cancer here in Columbus is unlike any other festival. The musicians work for expenses; sets are an hour long and each band plays one; the event is all in support of St. Jude's Childrens Research Hospital; and it just keeps coming at you all day long. I only have time to post some general impressions with some pictures. After the weekend is over I'll write a more general assessment and have a chance to cull through my pictures for the very best work. Meanwhile, for today and the next three days, here goes;
New Found Road
New Found Road began life as a gospel band and has expanded its repertoire to an increasingly fuller range, while maintaining its original purpose, too. They have become stronger each time we've seen them. The addition of Joe Booher on mandolin has been a good move.
James King Band
The James King Band came this week with an extra picker, because James is not playing the guitar while he awaits carpal tunnel surgery coming up in early August. Tom Timberlake, who is currently King's bassist played guitar while John Wade, formerly with King, filled in on bass. Eric Christopher is his new fiddle player. Daughter Shelby sand one solo while her Dad fondly looked on. It's great to see Chris Hill back with the band on banjo.
Lost and Found
Lost and Found has been around a long time and is always a reliable and entertaining band. Darrel Adkins highlighted their performance with a tribute to their generosity and support at the time of his daughters illnes.
Junior Sisk and Rambler's Choice
This is the third time we've seen this band in the past nine months. Each time they get better and better. The band is tight, Junior has matured as band head, and they generate real excitement for traditional bluegrass each time they play.
My apologees to Tim Massey.
Mountain Heart has come back together as a band. During the past eighteen months, three members have left the band. Now they're whole again and sounding just fine. Josh Shilling has matured into his lead singer role, bringing a new sound and sensibility with him. Clay Hess is a simply great flat picker and impresses with his stage personality. Young Aaron Ramsey shows signs of fitting in perfectly with his group led by Barry Abernathy and Jim vanCleve continue to mature and develop, often with surprising and pleasing outcomes.
David Parmley and Continental Divide
David Parmley has one of the silkiest and most pleasant baritone voices in bluegrass music. His music choices combine Bluegrass Cardinal classics with new material and well-known bluegrass classics. The band is solid and enjoyable.
Russell Moore and IIIrd Tyme Out
There's not much left to say about either IIIrd Tyme Out or the Lonesome River Band. Each has established and maintained a level of excellence over a period of time that speaks for itself and is unusual in any form of music. Such sustained excellence deserves more than I can write, but suffice it to say that when either band is on stage, fans are in the presence of greatness. When they appear on stage together, magic happens.
Lonesome River Band
At around 11:00 IIIrd Tyme Out came back on stage, and a lot of musicians who had picked together through the years had a chance to make music together. They chose to play bluegrass standards, highlighting each player and pulling together trios that just plain worked. Here's a set of pictures from that jam that speak for themselves.
And a Few Final Images
Shelby King and Dad
Fred Ricart of Ricart Automotive and Darrel Adkins