Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Rest in peace, Hazel McGee...

Hazel & Mac McGee performing with White Mountain Bluegrass
at the 2011 Jenny Brook Bluegrass Festival.
On Monday, we learned that Hazel McGee of White Mountain Bluegrass passed after a lengthy battle with cancer.  Along with her husband of nearly 60 years, Mac, Hazel was a founding member of White Mountain Bluegrass (or, WMB) -- one of the most-loved Bluegrass bands in the Northeast.  A person only needed to watch one set of music performed by WMB to know that Hazel was calling all the shots -- in the best way possible.  This was a lady who knew how to sing, and she surely knew how to keep all of her band members (including her husband, Mac, and their oldest son, Herman) in line.  Hazel respected the audiences who would come to see WMB -- for instance, she'd insist that the band members always dress neatly on the stage -- and the audiences loved her right back.  Hazel and Mac have both been recognized as "Pioneers Of Bluegrass" at the International Bluegrass Music Museum in Owensboro, Kentucky, and were honored by the Boston Bluegrass Union a few years ago, as well.  

While researching a bit more background information on White Mountain Bluegrass for this past Sunday's radio show, I came across a nice article that was written by a long-time WMB admirer, Robert Fraker, several years ago.  Originally, this piece was likely published in the old "Bluegrass Guide" published by Candi Sawyer, but it can now be found on the White Mountain Bluegrass website.  Even though the article is a few years old, it's still well-worth your time to read.  Hazel was a true treasure, and she will be -- and already is -- greatly missed...


The Heart and Soul

of

White Mountain Bluegrass

By:  Robert Fraker

It’s Sunday morning at the Thomas Point Beach bluegrass festival, one of the most difficult days of the year to get up at a reasonable hour.  But get up I do, pull on some sweats, grab a cup of coffee, stumble bleary-eyed and half-awake from my campsite to the stage area and settle down into someone else’s lawn chair.  It’s something I’ve done every Sunday morning of the many years I’ve been coming here, because soon White Mountain will begin their gospel set, and for the time they’re on stage, I’ll be in heaven – bluegrass heaven that is, listening to some of the best straight-up, old time singing and picking to be heard today.
For over thirty years now Mac and Hazel McGee and the band have been performing their distinctive brand of traditional bluegrass throughout the Northeast, in Florida and in the Mid-Atlantic states, and in Europe as well.  Based in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, Mac & Hazel are part of the tradition of transplanted Southerners like the Lilly Brothers and Don Stover, who brought an early awareness of bluegrass to the area’s country audiences, establishing a particularly keen regional enthusiasm for the music that continues to this day.  Hazel’s father died when she was five, and soon after, her family moved from Tennessee to join relatives living in Phoenix, NY, a small town in the Syracuse area. Her mother Ginny Cote, whose grandmother was a cousin of A.P. Carter, sang in a country band with her uncles, and when she was older, Hazel joined in from time to time.  Mac had come up from Georgia to join his brother in Boston, and they eventually moved to Phoenix for work.  Mac knew of Ginny and her band and one day showed up on her doorstep with a guitar badly in need of tuning.  Ginny invited him in and helped him tune his guitar and Mac began hanging out with the family.  Mac and Hazel started dating, going to the country music shows in the area, and singing together.  They formed a country band, with a lap steel and electric guitars, and performed the hits of the day, the classic songs of the 50′s greats, Hank Williams, Web Pierce, Lefty Frizell, Kitty Wells and Red Foley.  Bluegrass wasn’t in their minds.  Mac claims to have disliked it then.  “I thought it was the worst stuff in the world, if Bill Monroe came on the radio, I’d turn it off!”  Hazel adds, “Well, we were doing some songs at the time that were bluegrass, but we didn’t know it.”
Mac and Hazel married in 1957, when Mac was finished with military service in the Marines.  The following year they moved to Portsmouth, where Mac began his life-long career as an independent trucker, hauling gasoline.  The two continued playing old-time country informally with friends, occasionally performing in public.  But the move to Portsmouth ended up being a musical move to bluegrass for the couple as well.  The town’s proximity to Pease Air Force Base and the Kittery Navy Yard just to the north in Maine provided a source of bluegrass musicians from other parts of the country, servicemen homesick for the music and eager to play.  “They’d come into the local music store and ask around who was picking,” Mac remembers.  As a result, in the late 60′s Mac and Hazel met Roger Greene, a mandolin picker stationed at Pease, whom Mac credits as “a big influence in turning us on to bluegrass…   A nice guy, he taught us a lot.”  Pease AFB would later introduce them to mandolin builder, John Paganoni, a long-time friend and member of the band while he was stationed there.
Bluegrass was gaining momentum in the Northeast, and the McGees were definitely among the converted.  “Something abut bluegrass, just gets under your skin…” says Mac, describing a phenomenon that the music’s fans know all too well.  White Mountain Bluegrass was formed in 1970, with Mac and Hazel, Joe Pomerleau on fiddle, Jeff Lind on bass, Bob Frost on banjo and Sam Garris on mandolin.  Like so many others, the band started with friends playing informally, then as things started to come together and requests to perform began coming in, a band was born.  They played the usual round of pubs, pizza parlors and coffee houses.  At the time, the two main venues for the music were Jarvis’ Restaurant at the Portsmouth bus depot, and the Stone Church in New Market.  As time went on, the band’s reputation gained wider attention.  “A lot of people came to see us…  Don Stover, Joe Val, Bea Lilly,”  Mac recalls.  The era of festivals was developing and White Mountain were regulars at those started by Jimmy Cox and Fred Pike.  They performed at the very first festival at Thomas Point and have been at every one since.
It was Joe Val who recommended White Mountain to the Dutch country promoter Rienk Janssen for his ‘Strictly Country’ series of European tours.  Making the overseas journey a remarkable six times, White Mountain Bluegrass has played in Holland, Germany, France, Belgium, Switzerland, Denmark and Sweden, performances sampled in the band’s Aragon Mill:  Live in Holland CD.  Mac and Hazel recall the trips fondly:  “You can’t believe the warm reception you get, how they treat you like royalty….And they’d listen, every show you could hear a pin drop.”  Current mandolin player Jackie Greenwood adds “Holland is like home for White Mountain.  Everywhere you go the people request their songs, you can see them singing along with every word…”
Over the years the band has made seven recording projects, and see numerous personnel changes, numbering some of the finest pickers from Canada and the Northeast.  Of the many fine musicians, three deserve special mention for their longevity and contribution to the defining the classic White Mountain sound.  Mac and Hazel’s oldest son Herman McGee joined the band in the mid-70′s, with a powerful banjo attack and a distinctive cross-pick lead guitar style.  He is also a fine baritone singer, helping to create the band’s beautiful trios, and the band’s chief sound man.  Dobro player Roger Williams is recognized as one of the virtuosos of the instrument, his forceful and lyrical solos a key element in the band’s drive, and his low-range lead and harmony singing a crucial vocal contribution.  And last, the late and greatly missed Bill Sage, whose spirited, bluesy fiddling and wild antics on stage keeps the audiences alternately amazed and amused.  Mac and Hazel met Bill when he was playing with Don Stover.  An offer from Bill to fill in on fiddle when needed turned into a 12 year membership in the band.
How to account for a band that has lasted for over a quarter of a century?  “I think it’s because it’s just me and Hazel singing,” says Mac.  “We do all of the singing, whoever plays the instruments just fits in to our style.”  While other band members do sing occasional leads and harmony, Mac is essentially right.  His and Hazel’s singing is at the core of the White Mountain experience.  Their combined voices are what bluegrass soul is all about.  Mac has an airy weariness and a tinge of sadness to his voice that give to bluegrass songs, with their stories of heartbreak and lost homes and family, the ring of truth and experience that inspired them.  It is perfectly matched with Hazel’s soaring bluegrass tenor, a powerhouse of a voice that cuts like the best in the business, effortless and unadorned.  Both voices deliver with directness and honesty, both have a similar approach to singing.  When asked about their own vocal heroes, Mac mentioned Hank Williams right off.  “But I never tried to sing like anybody,” he continued, “You gotta sing with feeling, that’s all.”  Hazel agreed.  “You just open up your mouth and let it come out.”
In the end, though, what keeps a band going over thirty years is dedication, the year in – year out rising to the challenge of balancing music with work and raising a family.  “There was one year we were off only two weekends.  Sometimes I’d get home from playing and get in the truck and take off,” remembers Mac.  A good sense of humor is important, too, and there is no band that has more fun on stage.  Sets are informal and relaxed, with a joke or two, and often with surprise songs or performers.  Mac and Hazel are quick to agree that the greatest reward for their years of performing are the many friends they have made, both on stage and off, on both sides of the Atlantic.  And most satisfying, Hazel stresses, has been the participation of their sons Keith and Herman.  “It’s meant so much to us over the years.”  A question about the future of the band gets an answer that is both expected and reassuring.  Mac thinks a moment and replies, “I guess we’re going to be in as long as we can, it’s in our blood.  We’ll keep on it even if it’s just Hazel and me.”  Lucky for us, I think to myself.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

"Bluegrass Cafe" playlist - 10/26/2014

On Sunday afternoon, the playlist included selections that were classic, new, Autumn-ish, and ghostly.  

Wayne & Josh Crowe showcasing
at IBMA 2014 --
Mountain Fever Records showcase.
Our new selections this week included a couple of brand-new recordings both from the Crowe Brothers as well as Jimmy Gaudreau & Moondi Klein.  Other 2014 recordings were included, too, from the likes of Missy Werner, the Spinney Brothers, Marteka & William Lake, Joe Mullins & the Radio Ramblers, Mac Wiseman, Flatt Lonesome, Laurie Lewis & Kathy Kallick, Hot RizeJunior Sisk & Ramblers Choice, and the Earls of Leicester.  


The new recording from 89-year-old Mac Wiseman is called "Songs From My Mother's Hand."  As our show was airing, this music legend was being introduced as one of the newest members of the Country Music Hall of Fame.  "Songs From My Mother's Hand" is just that -- songs recently recorded by Mac Wiseman with lyrics that had been carefully noted in several notebooks when first heard by Ruth Wiseman on the radio in the 1930s and 1940s.  Mrs. Wiseman's son kept these notebooks for 70+ years, and chose the songs he wanted to record for this latest project.  Amazing...and worth a listen.  Check out this interview with Mac Wiseman on a recent NPR broadcast:  http://www.npr.org/2014/09/27/351538413/mac-wiseman-returns-to-the-songs-of-his-childhood

Halloween is coming up in just a few days, too, and since there is absolutely no shortage of ghost-related Bluegrass songs, we put together several of 'em in anticipation of Halloween.  Those songs came from the likes of the Hillmen, David Parmley, the Dillards, the Larry Stephenson Band, Front Range, the Steep Canyon Rangers, the Country Gentlemen, and the Seldom Scene.  Happy Halloween, everyone!

Jim will join you next Sunday afternoon for the next edition of Bluegrass Cafe.  Be sure to join him, won't you?

Enjoy the week!

Amy


PERFORMER / SONG / ALBUM / LABEL

  • Del McCoury Band / Katy Hill / RockyGrass / Blue Planet
  • Bill Monroe & His Blue Grass Boys / When The Golden Leaves Begin To Fall / Bill Monroe & His Blue Grass Boys, 1950-1951 / JSP Records
  • Dan Paisley & the Southern Grass / Leaves Musn't Fall [sic] / The Tradition Continues / Brandywine
  • Stanley Brothers / The Fields Have Turned Brown / Select Sides, 1949-1953 / JSP Records
  • J.D. Crowe & the New South / Old Home Place / Bluegrass Class Of 1990 / Rounder
  • Noam Pikelny / Monroe's Hornpipe / Noam Pikelny Plays Kenny Baker Plays Bill Monroe / Compass Records
  • Missy Werner / Rocks In The River / Turn This Heart Around / Self-Produced
  • Gibson Brothers / What A Ways We've Come / Red Letter Day / Sugar Hill
  • Nashville Bluegrass Band / Old Devil's Dream / Bluegrass Class Of 1990 / Rounder
  • White Mountain Bluegrass / Stranger In My Home / Aragon Mill / Strictly Country
  • White Mountain Bluegrass / You Ain't Woman Enough To Take My Man / Aragon Mill / Strictly Country
  • Spinney Brothers / The Whole World Must Be Knowin' / Tried & True / Compass Records
  • Marty Raybon & Full Circle / The Big Burnsville Jail / The Back Forty / Rural Rhythm
  • Marteka & William / Sally Ann / The Sounds Of A Tradition / Self-Produced
  • Lonesome Pine Fiddlers / Windy Mountain / Windy Mountain / Bear Family
  • Bill Harrell / The L & N Don't Stop Here Anymore / Raised By The Railroad Line / Rebel
  • Joe Mullins & the Radio Ramblers / Goin' Back To My Kentucky Country Home / Another Day From Life / Rebel [Joe Mullins birthday - 10/27/1965]
  • Eddie & Martha Adcock with Tom Gray & Friends / Amelia Earhart's Last Flight / Many A Mile / Patuxent Music [Martha Adcock birthday - 10/29/1949]
  • Fred Pike, Bill Rawlings & the Twin River Boys / Hickory Hollow / Authentic Bluegrass Folk Music / Osage [Fred Pike birthday - 10/27/1932]
  • Osborne Brothers / Fastest Grass Alive / Once More, Volumes 1 & 2 / Sugar Hill [Sonny Osborne birthday - 10/29/1937]
  • Crowe Brothers / I've Got The Moon On My Side / Forty Years Old / Mountain Fever Records
  • Crowe Brothers / Send Me The Pillow / Forty Years Old / Mountain Fever Records
  • The Hillmen / Brown Mountain Light / The Hillmen / Sugar Hill
  • David Parmley / The Silver Ghost / Southern Heritage / Rebel
  • The Dillards / Polly Vaughn / There Is A Time / Vanguard
  • Larry Stephenson Band / Clinch Mountain Mystery / Clinch Mountain Mystery / Pinecastle
  • Front Range / The Lantern / Ramblin' On My Mind / Sugar Hill
  • Steep Canyon Rangers / The Ghost Of Norma Jean / One Dime At A Time / Rebel
  • Country Gentlemen / Bringing Mary Home / The Early Rebel Recordings, 1962-1971 / Rebel
  • Seldom Scene / I've Come To Take You Home / Like We Used To Be / Sugar Hill
  • Mac Wiseman with Sierra Hull / You're A Flower Blooming In The Wildwood / Songs From My Mother's Hand / Wrinkled Records
  • Mac Wiseman / When I Get The Money Made / Early Dot Recordings, Volume 3 / County
  • Johnson Mountain Boys / Let's Part The Best Of Friends / Favorites / Rounder
  • James King / Blue Blue Day / Three Chords And The Truth / Rounder
  • Flatt Lonesome / Letters Have No Arms / Too / Mountain Home
  • Laurie Lewis & Kathy Kallick / Oh! Susanna / Laurie & Kathy Sing The Songs Of Vern & Ray / Spruce & Maple Music
  • Amy Gallatin & Stillwaters / You're For Me / Phoenix / Happy Appy Records
  • Jimmy Gaudreau & Moondi Klein / Where The Soul Of Man Never Dies / If I Had A Boat / Rebel
  • Hot Rize / I Am The Road / When I'm Free / Ten In Hand Records
  • Hazel Dickens & Alice Gerrard / Won't You Come And Sing For Me? / Pioneering Women Of Bluegrass / Smithsonian Folkways
  • Junior Sisk & Ramblers Choice / Jesus Walked Upon The Water / Trouble Follows Me / Rebel
  • Earls Of Leicester / Who Will Sing For Me / The Earls Of Leicester / Rounder
  • Volume Five / You Better Wake Up / Children Of The Mountain / Mountain Fever Records
  • Lester Flatt & Earl Scruggs / So Happy I'll Be / Selected Songs, 1948-1950 / JSP Records
  • White Mountain Bluegrass / Church At The Foot Of The Hill / Aragon Mill / Strictly Country
  • Country Gentlemen / Heavenward Bound / The Early Rebel Recordings, 1962-1971 / Rebel
  • Johnson Mountain Boys / Black Mountain Blues / Requests / Rounder

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Playlist - 10/19/2014

Hi Folks.

The show began with popular WV teen sibling duo Marteka & William channeling some Earl & Lester.  The reaction we received from playing these two on an earlier fill-in show was remarkable and I expect we will hear much more from them in the near future.

There was a tribute set to Songwriter Hall of Fame member Paul Craft who just died October 18, the day before this show.  The set also served to salute the Seldom Scene who not only kick-started Craft's songwriting career, but also whose original members were just inducted into the IBMA Hall of Fame.


New music, some of which was obtained while I was in Raleigh with the IBMA, included songs from the Lonesome River Band, Hot Rize, Larry Sparks, Junior Sisk, The Earls Of Leicester, Joe Mullins, Nu-Blu, Turning Ground, Wayne Taylor, Darin & Brooke Aldridge, The Spinney Brothers, and Crowe, Lawson and Williams.


One of my favorite things to do is share some of the rare music in my collection with the Bluegrass Cafe audience, and for this show it was a stack of 45 RPM singles that I scooped off the top of a "new" batch I have acquired.




The Heritage Corner featured The Campbell Trio, Jack Cooke, The Sloas Brothers, Frank Necessary and The Stone Mountain Boys, Morris Herbert and The Twin County Boys, Bill Box and The Dixie Drifters, The Dillards, The Chestnut Grove Quartet, Jimmie Williams & Red Ellis, Reno & Harrell, Carl Story, and Ralph Stanley, and more.

Tune in next Sunday when Amy will make the banjos and fiddles ring.

Jim Beaver

Paul Craft remembrance in red

Artist / Song / Album / Label
  • Marteka and William / Reuben / The Sounds Of A Tradition / Self-released
  • Lonesome River Band / Her Love Won't Turn On a Dime / Turn On a Dime / Mountain Home
  • Travers Chandler & Avery County / Stumblin Stones / Pardon Me... / Mountain Fever
  • Hot Rize / Glory In The Meeting House / When I'm Free / Ten In Hand
  • The Campbell Trio / Put My Little Shoes Away / We're Hooked On Bluegrass / Woodrich
  • Larry Efaw and the Bluegrass Mountaineers / Let the Whole World Talk / She Left Me Standing On a Mountain / Blue Circle
  • Dave Evans / Be Proud Of The Gray In Your Hair / Classic Bluegrass / Rebel
  • Larry Sparks / Loving You Too Well (w. Ralph Stanley) / Lonesome And Then Some / Rebel
  • The Spinney Brothers / Gonna Catch a Train (Leavin' You Behind) / Tried & True / Mountain Fever
  • Ralph Stanley & Ralph Stanley II / I've Still Got 99 / Side By Side / Rebel
  • The Seldom Scene / Raised By The Railroad Line / Act One / Rebel
  • The Seldom Scene / Keep Me From Blowing Away / Act Two / Rebel
  • The Seldom Scene / Through The Bottom Of The Glass (feat. Linda Ronstadt) / Old Train / Rebel
  • Charlie Sizemore / Nothing Happening Every Minute / Back Home / Rebel
  • The Osborne Brothers / Fastest Grass Alive / Once More, Vol. 1 & 2 / Sugar Hill
  • Turning Ground / Ohio River / Cell Of Mine / Self-released
  • Junior Sisk & Rambler's Choice / Honky-Tonked to Death / Trouble Follows Me / Rebel
  • Jack Cooke / I've Always Been A Rambler / Sittin' On Top Of The World / Pinecastle
  • The Earl Brothers / Hey Hey / Outlaw Hillbilly / Big Hen
  • The Earls Of Leicester / Dig a Hole In the Meadow / The Earls of Leicester / New Rounder
  • Marteka and William / John Henry / The Sounds Of A Tradition / Self-released
  • Marteka and William / Head Over Heels / The Sounds Of A Tradition / Self-released
  • Joe Mullins & the Radio Ramblers / Eat, Drink and Be Merry / Another Day From Life / Rebel
  • The Karl Shiflett & Big Country Show / My West Virginia Girl / Collectors Series Volume One / KSBC Music
  • Nu-Blu / That's What Makes the Bluegrass Blue / All The Way / Rural Rhythm
  • Mickey Boles / Music Politics / Single / Self-released
  • The Lilly Brothers & Don Stover / Bring Back My Blue Eyed Boy / Early Recordings / Rebel
  • Alex Leach / Heart Specialist / Mountain Heartache / Self-released
  • Darin & Brooke Aldridge / Get Up John / single /
  • The Sloas Brothers / Hillbilly Fiddler / 45 RPM Single / REM
  • Frank Necessary and the Stone Mountain Boys / Highway Of Love / 45 RPM Single / Jaylyn
  • Morris Herbert and the Twin County Boys / It's Just The Chance (You've Waited For) / 45 RPM Single / Blue Jay
  • Morris Herbert and the Twin County Boys / 'Cause I Don't Care / 45 RPM Single / Blue Jay
  • Bill Box And The Dixie Drifters / Georgia-Alabama / 45 RPM Single / Rich-R-Tone
  • The Dillards / Liberty / Live!!! Almost!!! / Elektra
  • Boys From Carolina / Another Lonesome Morning / County Line / Self-released
  • The Dillards / Dixie Breakdown / Live!!! Almost!!! / Elektra
  • Longview / Windy Mountain / High Lonesome / Rounder
  • Scotty Stoneman (bed) / Scotty's Hoedown / The Lost Masters / Old Homestead
  • Scotty Stoneman (bed) / Eighth Of January / The Lost Masters / Old Homestead
  • Scotty Stoneman (bed) / Scotty's Breakdown / The Lost Masters / Old Homestead
  • Scotty Stoneman (bed) / Ida Red / The Lost Masters / Old Homestead
  • Keith Whitley and Ricky Skaggs / Don't Cheat In Our Hometown / Second Generation / Rebel
  • Crowe, Lawson & Williams / My Walking Shoes / Standing Tall And Tough / Mountain Home
  • The Johnson Mountain Boys / Making Up Stories / Favorites / Rounder
  • Wayne Taylor / Sing WIth Me / Movin' On / Raincoe Music
  • Doug McKelway / Big Sciota / The Patuxent Banjo Project / Patuxent
  • Larry Gillis and the Hard Driving Bluegrass Band / Whippoorwill's Cry / Swampgrass / Tinman
  • Chestnut Grove Quartet / O What A Glad Day / The Legendary Chestnut Grove Quartet / Rebel
  • Jimmie Williams and Red Ellis / There Ain’t No Grave Gonna Hold My Body Down / 45 RPM EP / Starday
  • Don Reno & Bill Harrell / Campin' In Canaan's Land / 33-1/3 RPM EP / Wango
  • The Stanley Brothers / Someone's Last Day / 33-1/3 RPM EP / Wango
  • Mickey Boles / That Mountain Is Me / Let My Feet Go Runnin' / Self-released
  • Larry Stephenson / Great Speckled Bird / Pull Your Savior In / Compass
  • The Cooke Duet / Swing Down That Chariot / The Best Of The Cooke Duet / CRFRC
  • Carl Story / Mighty Close To Heaven / Complete Atteiram Collection / Gusto
  • Ralph Stanley and The Clinch Mountain Boys / Jesse James Prayed / Poor Rambler / King Canopy
  • Fred Etheridge with Nick Anderson & Mark Doyle / Walking In A Dream / Pickin' And Singin' / Self-released


Monday, October 13, 2014

"Bluegrass Cafe" playlist - 10/12/2014

Sunday's show was bunches of fun for me -- and I hope, for others, too! -- as I had not been on the air at WHUS since September 14th.  There has been so much new music and so many Bluegrass happenings since that date, it almost seemed like three hours wasn't going to be nearly enough time to share all of it, but we did okay...




There was a whole lot of new music to share, as well as music from a few folks who figured prominently during the International Bluegrass Music Association (or, IBMA) World of Bluegrass earlier this month.  We kicked off the show with a couple of songs from the newly-crowned Entertainers and Vocal Group of the Year, Balsam Range, as well as music from some of the newest members of the Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame -- the original members of the Seldom Scene.  

As far as newer music goes, we heard a whole lot of that, too.  This seems to be the busiest time of year for new Bluegrass recordings, and we played music from a bunch of 'em on Sunday, including Hot Rize, the Spinney Brothers, Becky Buller, Joe Mullins & the Radio Ramblers, Junior Sisk & Ramblers Choice, Bob Dick, the Earls of Leicester, the Lonesome River Band, and Phil Leadbetter.  

Jim's back in the Bluegrass Cafe next Sunday afternoon from 4-7PM -- please join him!

Have a great week!

Amy


PERFORMER / SONG / ALBUM / TITLE [Requests are RED].

  • Del McCoury Band / Katy Hill / RockyGrass / Blue Planet
  • Balsam Range / The Train's Ready / Marching Home / Mountain Home
  • The Grass Cats / The Mountains My Baby And Me / The Mountains My Baby And Me / New Time Records
  • The Expedition Show / Stormy Horizons / Stormy Horizons / Mountain Fever Records
  • Jim & Jesse / Have You Lost Your Love For Me / Radio Shows / Rural Rhythm
  • Balsam Range / Moon Over Memphis / Five / Mountain Home
  • Seldom Scene / Wait A Minute / Different Roads / Rebel
  • Seldom Scene / Raised By The Railroad Line / 15th Anniversary Celebration / Sugar Hill
  • Seldom Scene / What Am I Doing Hangin' 'Round / Long Time...Seldom Scene / Smithsonian Folkways
  • Paul Adkins & the Borderline Band / Reflections Of Love / Reflections Of Love / Rebel
  • Bluegrass Brothers / When The Mountain Fell / Generations / Mountain Fever Records
  • Reno & Smiley / Mountain Rosa Lee / Early Years, 1951-1959 / Gusto
  • Eddie Adcock / Cedar City Blues / The Patuxent Banjo Project / Patuxent Music
  • Bob Paisley & the Southern Grass / At The End Of A Long, Lonely Day / No Vacancy / Brandywine
  • Lynn Morris / No One Has To Tell Me (What Love Is) / Mama's Hand / Rounder
  • Alan Munde & Billy Bright / Jaybird / Bright Munde / Munde's Child Records
  • Parmley & McCoury / Me And The Jukebox / Families Of Tradition / BGC
  • Big Country Bluegrass / Headin' South / Memories Of The Past / Rebel
  • Hot Rize / Doggone / When I'm Free / Ten In Hand Records
  • Hot Rize / Sky Rider / When I'm Free / Ten In Hand Records
  • Spinney Brothers / My Music Comes From Bill / Tried & True / Mountain Fever Records
  • Becky Buller / Queen Of The Mountain Bootleggers / 'Tween Earth & Sky / Dark Shadow Recording
  • Joe Mullins & the Radio Ramblers / Miss Molly / Another Day From Life / Rebel
  • Junior Sisk & Ramblers Choice / Trouble Follows Me / Trouble Follows Me / Rebel
  • Bob Dick / Rebels Ye Rest / Life's Highway / Appleland Records
  • Lester Flatt & Earl Scruggs / Salty Dog Blues / The Complete Mercury Recordings / Mercury
  • Lester Flatt & Earl Scruggs / Someone Took My Place With You / Selected Cuts, 1952-1955 / JSP Records
  • Lester Flatt & Earl Scruggs / Ground Speed / Selected Cuts, 1955-1959 / JSP Records
  • The Earls Of Leicester / You're Not A Drop In The Bucket / The Earls Of Leicester / Rounder
  • Lonesome River Band / Her Love Won't Turn On A Dime / Turn On A Dime / Mountain Home
  • Phil Leadbetter with Jerry Douglas & Rob Ickes / Just Joshin' / The Next Move / Pinecastle
  • The Earls Of Leicester / Till The End Of The World Rolls 'Round / The Earls Of Leicester / Rounder
  • Bluegrass Gospel Project / Far Side Banks Of Jordan / Shine / Vital Records
  • Crowe, Lawson & Williams / Standing Tall And Tough / Standing Tall And Tough / Mountain Home
  • Johnson Mountain Boys / Black Eyed Susie / Requests / Rounder
  • Flatt Lonesome / I Can't Be Bothered / Too / Mountain Home
  • Bear Tracks / Ta Ta, The Brushoff / Makin' New Tracks / Self-Produced
  • Bear Bridge Band / I'm Watching The Train Passing By / Broken Hearts & Better Times / Open Road
  • Larry Stephenson Band / Pull Your Savior In / Pull Your Savior In / Whysper Dream Music
  • Del McCoury Band / Free Salvation / The Streets Of Baltimore / McCoury Music
  • Country Gentlemen / God's Coloring Book / The Sugar Hill Collection / Sugar Hill
  • Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver / Get On Board / Open Carefully, Message Inside / Mountain Home
  • Laurie Lewis & Kathy Kallick / Touch Of God's Hand / Laurie & Kathy Sing The Songs Of Vern & Ray / Spruce And Maple Music
  • Michael Cleveland & Flamekeeper / Over On The Other Side / On Down The Line / Compass Records
  • Gibson Brothers / Home On The River / They Called It Music / Compass Records
  • Spinney Brothers / I Wanna Walk With Jesus / Tried & True / Mountain Fever Records
  • Dailey & Vincent / Won't It Be Wonderful There / Brothers Of The Highway / Rounder
  • Johnson Mountain Boys / Black Mountain Blues / Requests / Rounder

Friday, October 10, 2014

Fill-in Playlist - 10/8/2014 - "Bluegrass Snack Bar"

Hi Folks.

I had the opportunity to fill in for a quick hour Wednesday evening, and decided it would be a shortened version of "Bluegrass Cafe" that I called "Bluegrass Snack Bar."  Perhaps it will be "Bluegrass Diner" on the next short fill-in.

I played nearly all new music provided by many artists at the IBMA World of Bluegrass, plus a brand new CD from Marteka & William (Lake) from West Virginia -- teen siblings who are following in the musical footsteps of Lester & Earl. This young duo turned out to have a significant following, and their fans made numerous requests for more during the course of the hour which I happily obliged. Their CD and some earlier work can be ordered on their web site here.

Other new music came from Larry Stephenson Band, Lonesome River Band, Becky Buller, Gold Heart, Junior Sisk, Crowe Brothers, Darin and Brooke Aldridge, Joe Mullins, Hot Rize, Front Country, and others.

Check out the playlist below, and tune in Sunday when Amy will make the banjos and fiddles ring.

Jim Beaver

Requests in blue

Artist / Song / Album / Label

  • Marteka and William / Yonder Stands Little Maggie / The Sounds Of A Tradition / Self-released
  • Marteka and William / Johnson Ridge Special / The Sounds Of A Tradition / Self-released
  • Lonesome River Band / Bonnie Brown / Turn On a Dime / Mountain Home 
  • Becky Buller / Queen Of The Mountain Bootleggers / 'Tween Earth And Sky / Dark Shadow
  • Nu-Blu / That's What Makes The Bluegrass Blue / All The Way / Rural Rhythm 
  • Gold Heart / Ain't That Crazy / Places I've Been / Self-released
  • Jim and Lynna Woolsey / Wheel in His Hand / The Road That Brings You Home / Broken Record 
  • David Naiditch / Blackberry Blossom (feat. Pat Cloud) / Bluegrass Harmonica / Naiditch Productions
  • Marteka and William / When The Angels Carry Me Home / The Sounds Of A Tradition / Self-released
  • Junior Sisk & Ramblers Choice / Gonna Make Her Mine / Trouble Follows Me / Rebel
  • Tristan Scroggins / A Room Full Of Stumps / Disappointed Idealist / Self-released
  • Crowe Brothers / Someday My Ship Will Sail / Forty Years Old / Mountain Fever
  • Darin and Brooke Aldridge / Get Up John / Snapshots / Mountain Home
  • Larry Sparks / Loving You Too Well (w. Ralph Stanley) / Lonesome And Then Some / Rebel
  • Joe Mullins & the Radio Ramblers / Eat, Drink and Be Merry / Another Day From Life / Rebel
  • Hot Rize / Glory In The Meeting House / When I'm Free / Ten In Hand 
  • Randal Morton & Terry Ferguson / Red Haired Boy / Twin Banjos / Self-released
  • Marteka and William / John Henry / The Sounds Of A Tradition / Self-released
  • Front Country / Long Ago, Far Away / Sake of the Sound / Front Country
  • Larry Stephenson Band / Morningtime Always / Pull Your Savior In / Whysper Dream 





Playlist - 10/5/2014

James & Cathy Ward filled-in for Jim while he was returning from IBMA in Raleigh NC.  Playlist coming soon.

Playlist - 9/28/2014

James & Cathy Ward filled in while Amy was off to IBMA WOB in Raleigh NC.  Playlist coming soon.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Playlist - 9/21/2014 - Marti on the Mic

Hi Folks.

There were two great shows going on this evening in the area.  The Gibson Brothers were playing in Canterbury and Tom Mindte and The Patuxent Partners were over at the Firebox in Hartford, so Marti agreed to do both Red Rooster Party and Bluegrass Cafe solo so Jim could have some listening fun.  Jim is very thankful for such a wonderful spouse who would do something like that after being away from the operator's microphone for many years.

Marti did a great job, and we thank her profusely.

The playlist is below the photos of The Gibson Brothers and Bear Minimum in Canterbury.

James & Cathy Ward will be filling in on Bluegrass Cafe for the next couple of weeks while Amy and Jim are at the IBMA World of Bluegrass in Raleigh NC.  Tune them in!

Jim & Marti

The Gibson Brothers
Bear Minimum

Artist / Song / Album / Label

  • The Karl Shiflett & Big Country Show / Six White Horses / Collectors Series Volume One / KSBC Music
  • The Karl Shiflett & Big Country Show / My West Virginia Girl / Collectors Series Volume One / KSBC Music
  • The Karl Shiflett & Big Country Show / I'm Telling You Now That I Love You / Collectors Series Volume One / KSBC Music
  • Keith Whitley & Ricky Skaggs / Don't Cheat In Our Hometown / Second Generation / Rebel
  • Keith Whitley & Ricky Skaggs / Dream Of A Miner's Child / Second Generation / Rebel
  • Travers Chandler & Avery County / The Stanley Brothers / Pardon Me... / Mountain Fever
  • Travers Chandler & Avery County / I Could Change My Mind / Pardon Me... / Mountain Fever
  • Travers Chandler & Avery County / Reuben Takes the D-Train / Pardon Me... / Mountain Fever
  • The Gillis Brothers / Down By The River / Best Of The Gillis Brothers - The Hay Holler Years / Hay Holler
  • The Gillis Brothers / Keeper of the Door / Best Of The Gillis Brothers - The Hay Holler Years / Hay Holler
  • The Dillards / There Is A Time / Live!!! Almost!!! / Rhino-Elektra
  • The Dillards / Old Blue / Live!!! Almost!!! / Rhino-Elektra
  • The Dillards / Pretty Polly / Live!!! Almost!!! / Rhino-Elektra
  • Buzz Busby / Whose Red Wagon / Going Home / Starday
  • Buzz Busby / Lonesome Wind / Going Home / Starday
  • Buzz Busby / Cold and Windy Night / Going Home / Starday
  • Red Allen / That's How I Can Count On You / Lonesome And Blue: The Complete County Recordings / Rebel Records
  • Red Allen / I'm On My Way Back To The Old Home / Lonesome And Blue: The Complete County Recordings / Rebel Records
  • Red Allen / We Live In Two Different Worlds / Lonesome And Blue: The Complete County Recordings / Rebel Records
  • Lilly Brothers & Don Stover / When The Saints Go Marching In / Early Recordings / Rebel Records
  • Lilly Brothers & Don Stover / Southern Skies / Early Recordings / Rebel Records
  • Lilly Brothers & Don Stover / John Henry / Early Recordings / Rebel Records
  • Eddie & Martha Adcock with Tom Gray and friends / Many A Mile / Many a Mile / Patuxent
  • Eddie & Martha Adcock with Tom Gray and friends / Two Little Boys / Many a Mile / Patuxent
  • Eddie & Martha Adcock with Tom Gray & Friends / Mary Dear / Many A Mile / Patuxent
  • Reno And Harrell / Reno Bound / Reno Bound / John Boy & Billy
  • Reno And Harrell / Sweet Miss Sarah Jane / Reno Bound / John Boy & Billy
  • Reno And Harrell / Mister Bottle / Reno Bound / John Boy & Billy
  • Emerson & Newton / Long Gone Baby / A Foot in the Past, A Foot in the Future / Pinecastle
  • Emerson & Newton / Monrosine / A Foot in the Past, A Foot in the Future / Pinecastle
  • Emerson & Newton / The Singer / A Foot in the Past, A Foot in the Future / Pinecastle
  • Audie Blaylock / Trains Are The Only Way To Fly / Trains Are The Only Way To Fly / Self-released
  • Audie Blaylock / Steal Away Somewhere and Die / Trains Are The Only Way To Fly / Self-released
  • Audie Blaylock / Wildwood Flower Blues / Trains Are The Only Way To Fly / Self-released
  • The Earls Of Leicester / Big Black Train / The Earls of Leicester / New Rounder
  • The Earls Of Leicester / Till the End of the World Rolls ‘Round / The Earls of Leicester / New Rounder
  • Darren Beachley and the Legends of the Potomac / Other Side of Lonely / Take Off / Patuxent
  • Darren Beachley and the Legends of the Potomac / How I Could I Love Her So Much / Take Off / Patuxent
  • Darren Beachley and the Legends of the Potomac / Miss You Mississippi / Take Off / Patuxent
  • Alison Krauss & Union Station / Paper Airplane / Paper Airplane / Rounder
  • Alison Krauss & Union Station / Dust Bowl Children / Paper Airplane / Rounder
  • Alex Leach / Mountain Heartache / Mountain Heartache / Self-released
  • The Karl Shiflett & Big Country Show / Six White Horses / Collectors Series Volume One / KSBC Music
  • Bear Minimum / Will You Wait For Me / Different Brothers With The Same Sister / Self-released
  • The Gibson Brothers / Sam Smith / Spread Your Wings / Hay Holler
  • Delia Bell & Bill Grant / Won't You Come And Sing For Me / Dreaming / Rounder
  • Joe Val & the New England Bluegrass Boys / Do You Live What You Preach / One Morning In May / Rounder
  • The Gibson Brothers / Satan's Jeweled Crown / Long Way Back Home / Sugar Hill
  • The Johnson Mountain Boys / We'll Still Sing On / Favorites / Rounder
  • Fred Etheridge with Nick Anderson & Mark Doyle / What Would You Do / Pickin' And Singin' / Self-released
  • David Peterson / On The Other Side Of Jordan / Simplicity / Self-released
  • Dave Evans / You'll Never Walk The Streets Of Gold / Classic Bluegrass / Rebel
  • The Gillis Brothers / The Promise / Best Of The Gillis Brothers - The Hay Holler Years / Hay Holler

Sunday, September 14, 2014

"Bluegrass Cafe" playlist - 9/14/2014

Well...we certainly had a busy Sunday at the Bluegrass Cafe!  It was a day filled with birthday tributes to two music legends; we honored a banjo picker (Eddie Adcock) who recently won a big, big prize; and we included a boatload of new music from some mighty wonderful pickers.  Hope you were able to join us for some, if not all, of the show!  

Starting with the birthday tributes, we included a whole bunch of music from the pen and/or vocal performance of the Father of Bluegrass Music, Bill Monroe (born September 13, 1911), as well as several selections from the song catalog of the one and only Hank Williams, who would have celebrated his birthday on September 17th (born on that date in 1923).  

Since it is the "busy season" for new Bluegrass recordings -- the International Bluegrass Music

Association's World of Bluegrass event takes place in Raleigh, NC at the end of this month -- we have received bunches of them over the last couple of weeks.  On Sunday, we shared a few songs from those new projects, really even before we had a chance to preview them!  Great stuff, all around, and we will surely look forward to hearing more of these new projects from established acts like Junior Sisk & Ramblers Choice and Joe Mullins & the Radio Ramblers, special event recordings from Mike Auldridge, Jerry Douglas, & Rob Ickes and the Flatt & Scruggs all-star tribute band known as the Earls of Leicester, and New England Bluegrass veteran, Bob Dick.  All of it sounded quite wonderful -- can't wait to hear these full projects!

Hope you have a terrific week, and be sure to join Marti for next week's Bluegrass Cafe!  

Amy


PERFORMER / SONG / ALBUM / LABEL


  • Del McCoury Band / Katy Hill / RockyGrass / Blue Planet
  • Bill Monroe & His Blue Grass Boys / My Rose Of Old Kentucky / Bill Monroe & His Blue Grass Boys, 1946-1949 / JSP Records
  • Dailey & Vincent / Close By / Bill Monroe Centennial Celebration / Rounder
  • Bill Monroe & His Blue Grass Boys / Get Up John / Bill Monroe & His Blue Grass Boys, 1951-1954 / JSP Records
  • David Peterson & 1946 / In Despair / In The Mountaintops To Roam / Self-Produced
  • Bill Monroe & His Blue Grass Boys / Out In The Cold World / Bill Monroe & His Blue Grass Boys, 1957-1958 / JSP Records
  • Claire Lynch / My Florida Sunshine / Bill Monroe Centennial Celebration / Rounder
  • Monroe Brothers / Nine Pound Hammer Is Too Heavy / Bill Monroe & His Blue Grass Boys, 1936 / JSP Records
  • Bill Monroe & His Blue Grass Boys / In The Pines / The King And The Father / MME
  • Larry Cordle, Glen Duncan & Lonesome Standard Time / Kentucky King / Larry Cordle, Glen Duncan & Lonesome Standard Time / Sugar Hill
  • Mark Newton Band / Down In The Cold Ground / Charlie Lawson's Still / Rebel
  • Bluegrass Brothers / Memories Of My Childhood / Generations/ Mountain Fever Records
  • Laurie Lewis & Kathy Kallick / Oh! Susanna / Laurie & Kathy Sing The Songs Of Vern & Ray / Spruce & Maple Music
  • Michael Cleveland & Flamekeeper / Fiddlin' Joe / On Down The Line / Compass Records
  • Nashville Bluegrass Band / Monroebilia / The Nashville Bluegrass Band / Rounder
  • Wayne Taylor / Gamblin' Man / Movin' On / Raincoe Music
  • Eddie & Martha Adcock with Tom Gray / He Was A Friend Of Mine / Many A Mile / Patuxent Music
  • Country Gentlemen / Heartaches / Folk Session Inside / Copper Creek
  • Country Gentlemen / Blue Ridge Mountain Blues / On The Road (And More) / Smithsonian Folkways
  • Country Gentlemen / Amelia Earhart's Last Flight / Can't You Hear Me Callin' / Rebel
  • Rhonda Vincent with Daryle Singletary / We Must Have Been Out Of Our Minds / Only Me / Upper Management Music
  • Longview / It's Goodbye And So Long To You / Longview / Rounder
  • Darren Nicholson / Sugar Creek Gap / Things Left Undone / Self-Produced
  • Detour / Quarterline Road / A Better Place / Self-Produced
  • Nightflyer / Lonesome Road / Rail, River & Road / Kang Records
  • Bluegrass Patriots / Will I Be That Lucky Man / E Pluribus Bluegrass / Red Feather
  • Hot Rize / Western Skies / When I'm Free / Ten In Hand Records
  • Joe Mullins & the Radio Ramblers / Another Day From Life / Another Day From Life / Rebel
  • Mike Auldridge, Jerry Douglas & Rob Ickes / The Three Bells / The Three Bells / Sugar Hill
  • Bob Dick / Silence Or Tears / Life's Highway / Appleland Records
  • Junior Sisk & Ramblers Choice / Honky-Tonked To Death / Trouble Follows Me / Rebel
  • Earls Of Leicester / Don't Let Your Deal Go Down / The Earls Of Leicester / Rounder
  • Lester Flatt & Earl Scruggs / Don't Let Your Deal Go Down / Selected Sides, 1948-1952 / JSP Records
  • Gibson Brothers / They Called It Music / They Called It Music / Compass Records
  • Jim Mills with Alan O'Bryant / There'll Be No Teardrops Tonight / Bound To Ride / Sugar Hill
  • Joe Val / 'Neath A Cold Gray Tomb Of Stone / Diamond Joe / Rounder
  • Good Ol' Persons / Settin' The Woods On Fire / Good 'N Live / Sugar Hill
  • Spinney Brothers / Cold Cold Heart / Going Home / Self-Produced
  • Bill Monroe & His Blue Grass Boys / I'm Blue, I'm Lonesome / Bill Monroe & His Blue Grass Boys, 1950-1951 / JSP Records
  • Larry Sparks with Jesse McReynolds & Curly Seckler / I'm Gonna Sing, Sing, Sing / Lonesome And Then Some... / Rebel
  • Crowe & McLaughlin / I Want To Be A Christian Soldier / Going Home / Rounder
  • Crowe, Lawson & Williams / Insured Beyond The Grave / Standing Tall And Tough / Mountain Home
  • Lynn Morris Band / I Know What You're Talking About / Shape Of A Tear / Rounder
  • Junior Sisk & Ramblers / Jesus Walked On The Water / Trouble Follows Me / Rebel
  • Earls Of Leicester / Who Will Sing For Me / The Earls Of Leicester / Rounder
  • The Bluegrass Band / Little Community Church / Shine Hallelujah Shine / Hay Holler
  • Hank Williams / I Saw The Light / Gospel Keepsakes / Time Life
  • Johnson Mountain Boys / Black Mountain Blues / Requests / Rounder