Monday, May 7, 2012

Lou Reid & Carolina - CD Release at Wal Mart

Lou Reid has had a long and distinguished career in bluegrass music. He has been a member of Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver, toured with Ricky Skaggs, been lead singer as well as guitarist and mandolinist in two stints with The Seldom Scene, and, since 1992, fronted his own band Lou Reid & Carolina. With the changes that have been seen in the music business, Reid, like all musicians, has been forced to seek out new and innovative ways to disseminate and market his recordings. He has recently formed his own music publishing company called KMA Records and established a distribution relationship with Anderson Merchandisers. Saturday's CD release of Lou Reid & Carolina's new CD "Callin' Me Back Home," was a result of the confluence of these new strategies. 

 Wal Mart in Statesville, NC

Saturday was bright, dry, and quite warm in Statesville, NC with cotton ball clouds skidding across the sky. We arrived early to orient ourselves and re-stock some essentails to find the store festooned with posters, signs, and flyers announcing the Lou Reid & Carolina release event scheduled to begin at 1:00 PM. By the time we emerged from the store, Lou and Christy Reid along with sidemen Trevor Watson and Ron Inscore along with a sound man and a couple of helpers were busily setting up sound equipment on a flatbed set into a nook beside one of the two main entrances to the store as people began to arrive and, as bluegrass fans know to do, set up lawn chairs to watch in relative comfort, even on a parking lot. 

Soon, sound check was completed and a small, enthusiastic crowd of fans had assembled for the show. Lou and his band kicked off the first song, and the performance, featuring songs from "Callin' Me Back Home," to be sold later inside the store began.
Lou Reid & Carolina - Oh, Kentucky

A look at the audience suggests one of the great advantages of Walmart distribution, as those assembled ranged from babes in arms to bluegrass fans well into their seventies. The diversity of customers at Wal Mart shows the potential for bluegrass music to widen its audience, particularly when live performances are offered to help introduce the music to new audiences.

The Band

Christy & Lou Reid

Trevor Watson
Ron Inscore

 Lou Reid & Carolina - Big Old Red Guitar

Autograph Session
Lou Reid

 Christy Reid

Lou Reid & Carolina's new CD "Callin' Me Home" can be purchased at selected Walmart stores, from the band's web site, and through Amazon directly from this blog. It's a very fine CD with carefully selected all original material reflecting traditional bluegrass sounds in new and delightful contemporary settings. Look for my review soon.