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View Full Version : Come on someone must want to talk Bluegrass



jessecuster3
06-30-2006, 08:17 AM
Ok I know I am probably the only one, but I am obsessed. A friend gave me John Hartford's Aereo-Plain album a few years ago and I have been hooked ever since.

We have all heard more of it than you realize. Obviously, most of O Brother Where Art Thou is bluegrass, John Hartford actually played the instrumental version of Man of Constant Sorrow. Similarly, most should know the theme to the Beverly Hillbillies which was composed and performed by Lester Flatt and Earl Scruggs. In addition, the famous Dueling Banjos scene from deliverance has been done and redone by countless bluegrass performers.

So with the recent rise of bands like Yonder Mountain String Band, who just had their Major Label debut, am I still the only one who listens on a regular basis ?

Shellhead
06-30-2006, 08:45 AM
I like to dabble in various genres and sub-genres of music, so I eventually plan on picking up some bluegrass. I've heard the soundtrack to O Brother, and while it was good, I think I would enjoy it even more on subsequent listenings. And recently, I stumbled across mention of a peculiar bluegrass collection called "Moody Bluegrass" a tribute by various bluegrass artists to the music of the Moody Blues. It got a great review, and I used to be a big fan of the Moody Blues, so I plan on getting this someday.

jessecuster3
06-30-2006, 09:17 AM
Yes the tributes can be fun, I have the Modest Mouse one, the Wilco one and at leats one of the Grateful Dead ones. The Wilco one is all instrumental, and the Dead one is kind of silly as their roots stem from bluegrass in the first place.

Lubichev
06-30-2006, 09:41 AM
Ever since I picked up the mandolin and banjo, I've really started to listen to more and more Bluegrass. I was already deep into Traditional Irish and Scottish music, which are basically the forefathers of Bluegrass, so it seemed like the logical step. I go through stages of how much I listen to, but I have a good collection to choose from. I'm a sucker for the early mountain stuff. Stanley Brothers. Osborne Brothers. Bill Monroe and his Bluegrass Boys (the Monroe/doc Watson Smithsonian Recording is wonderful).
High Lonesome: The Story of Bluegrass Music is essential viewing and listening.
Check out some Russian Bluegrass! The Countrybandists!

jessecuster3
06-30-2006, 09:48 AM
Ever since I picked up the mandolin and banjo, I've really started to listen to more and more Bluegrass. I was already deep into Traditional Irish and Scottish music, which are basically the forefathers of Bluegrass, so it seemed like the logical step. I go through stages of how much I listen to, but I have a good collection to choose from. I'm a sucker for the early mountain stuff. Stanley Brothers. Osborne Brothers. Bill Monroe and his Bluegrass Boys (the Monroe/doc Watson Smithsonian Recording is wonderful).
High Lonesome: The Story of Bluegrass Music is essential viewing and listening.
Check out some Russian Bluegrass! The Countrybandists!


I really want to learn the banjo, how do you like it, and do you like the mandolin ?

It always cracks me up how the biggest guys in the band play mandolin, and then it looks like a toy in their arms.

Have you listened to any "newgrass"? John Hartford pretty much originated it and may be the best banjo player I ever heard. Sam Bush was a part of that movement too, and his New Grass Revival was instrumental in bringing back that sound in the 1970's.

As a side note I get to see Sam Bush July 7th at a teeny tiny place here in Chicago.

Lubichev
06-30-2006, 10:18 AM
The banjo is surprisingly easy to pick up. After a few hours of dicking around on it, I had a couple of tunes. Now clawhammering is hard to get used to, but once you get it, it almost seems like second nature. I love the mandolin. It is stringed like an upside down bass guitar and just like the fiddle. So if you can get a little farmilar with the mandolin, the fiddle is just a small step away. Getting the bowing down is where the difficulty lies. And the no frets thing. But I love toying around on them. Nothing like a little bluegrass breakdown to make it all better.
I've gotten into a little newgrass. Sam Bush is one of the best out there. You're gonna have a blast. Jerry Douglas, the dobro player that is SO GOOD it is almost annoying (he plays with Allison Kraus) Tony Rice, even Bela Fleck was a Newgrassy for a while.

jessecuster3
06-30-2006, 10:42 AM
I actually played violin when I was young, by 10 years old I was the best in Illinois at my age. By 11 years old I realized it wasn't "cool" to play violin and i dropped it. I wonder how much I would retain, if I tried to pick it back up.

I saw Bela Fleck with Bryan Sutton, and Casey Driessen at the most amazing place in St Louis. Believe it or not, Bela was not even the best musician, Bryan Sutton blew the place away. Walking out everyone was talking about how amazing he was. At one point he broke a string on his guitar, and continued to play beautifully for the rest of the song, then left to replace the string. Four or five songs later he broke yet another string. I have since picked up both of Sutton's albums and they are incredible displays of guitar picking.

Lubichev
06-30-2006, 11:22 AM
I actually played violin when I was young, by 10 years old I was the best in Illinois at my age. By 11 years old I realized it wasn't "cool" to play violin and i dropped it. I wonder how much I would retain, if I tried to pick it back up.


I gurantee it wouldn't take long.

You should get yourself a cheap mandolin. You can find nice beginners "A" Model for around 150 dollars.
http://elderly.com/new_instruments/items/KM140.htm
BTW, Elderly is one of the best music store/sites around. Especially for Bluegrass fans.

Sentry
07-02-2006, 10:39 AM
Ido, but im only just getting inot it. I have an album by a band called the old crow medicine show that i really like.

can anyone recommend anyone who i should def pick up?

DennyK
07-03-2006, 07:59 AM
http://www.foogle.biz/deliverance_the_movie/deliverance2_guitar.jpg

jessecuster3
07-03-2006, 08:06 AM
Ido, but im only just getting inot it. I have an album by a band called the old crow medicine show that i really like.

can anyone recommend anyone who i should def pick up?


Make sure you pick up John Hartford's album Aereo-Plain. He is the father of modern bluegrass.

Old Crow Medicine Show are great, you should also make it a point to listen to Yonder Mountin String Band. You can listen to many of their past shows here: http://www.archive.org/details/YonderMountainStringBand

If I can recommend an especially good one, listen to the show they did for New Years in 2002. They came out for their first set as "Cosmic Bowling League" and played an entire set of Bluegrass Classics and then left the stage only to come back and play their entire normal show.

Paul McEnery
07-05-2006, 03:44 PM
I feel compelled to recommend the Shut-Ins, who played at my 666 party; and the Burning Embers, who played at the Shut-Ins party.

And to come to San Francisco for the Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival. Three days, five stages, all free.

kmeyers
07-05-2006, 03:49 PM
Ido, but im only just getting inot it. I have an album by a band called the old crow medicine show that i really like.

can anyone recommend anyone who i should def pick up?
Leftover Salmon. Try to find their live bluegrass cover of "Hey Joe." It makes my hair catch on fire everytime I hear it.

jessecuster3
07-05-2006, 08:04 PM
Leftover Salmon. Try to find their live bluegrass cover of "Hey Joe." It makes my hair catch on fire everytime I hear it.

They are alright, a little too noodly for my taste. I have seen Drew Emmitt a few times and he plays much more traditional bluegrass.

kmeyers
07-05-2006, 08:11 PM
They are alright, a little too noodly for my taste. I have seen Drew Emmitt a few times and he plays much more traditional bluegrass.
Leftover Salmon's live banjo and mandolin duels are incredible.

jessecuster3
07-07-2006, 09:55 AM
Sam Bush tonight !!!!!!

Lubichev
07-07-2006, 10:15 AM
I envy you. Let us know how it was.

jessecuster3
07-07-2006, 10:24 AM
I envy you. Let us know how it was.


Looks like I have an extra ticket, can you get to Chicago ?

Lubichev
07-07-2006, 10:25 AM
Looks like I have an extra ticket, can you get to Chicago ?
Alas, not today. Now I'm really bummed.

I'll be there in August for WizWorld though.

jessecuster3
07-07-2006, 10:28 AM
Alas, not today. Now I'm really bummed.

I'll be there in August for WizWorld though.

Nickel Creek is playing at Lollapalooza during WizWorld

Lubichev
07-07-2006, 10:36 AM
I'm going to move to Chicago as soon as I can sell this theatre.

jessecuster3
07-07-2006, 10:36 AM
I'm going to move to Chicago as soon as I can sell this theatre.

Where are you now ?

Lubichev
07-07-2006, 11:08 AM
Millville, PA.

jessecuster3
07-07-2006, 11:13 AM
Millville, PA.


I believe that is part of Pennsyltucky

Lubichev
07-07-2006, 11:27 AM
Whosnwhatsy?

jessecuster3
07-07-2006, 11:40 AM
A friend of mine grew up in the more counrty part of PA so he always calls it Pennsyltucky.

Lubichev
07-07-2006, 11:43 AM
Just googled it. Interesting. You learn something new everyday.

Yeah, I'm pretty much in Pennsyltucky, I guess.

jessecuster3
07-10-2006, 07:02 AM
OK Sam Bush was awesome. First off, he played at a bar called the Cubby Bear, that is across the street from Wrigley Field, so he walked onto stage ina Cubs jersey, eliciting even a bigger cheer from audience. The audience was very varied, old, young, fat, thin, country, trendy, etc. but the overwhelming majority were there to see Sam Bush, and knew his music pretty well. His set up was a drummer, a banjo player, an acoustic guitarist, and a bass player who alternated between stand up and electric bass. Sam came out with a fiddle and they played a really good bluegrass jam to start the night. Then he picked up his mandolin and played a number of his new songs and some slightly older stuff. Then he said "Here's a John Hartford number in 5/4 time", and between him and the banjo player they cranked out a great version of Hartford's On The Road, a very obscure song by John Hartford, off his little known Morning Bugle album(which is also REALLY hard to find a copy). After this, Sam picked up a guitar and played his more rock and roll stuff for a couple of songs. Finally back to his mandolin, he played another John Hartford song, prefacing it by saying this is off the Aereo-Plain album, eliciting huge cheers, they really wailed a version of Back In The Goodle Days. A couple songs later, the band left the stage. Sam came out by himself and called to the stage, some Chicago mandolin legend, whom I had never heard of before. The two of them jammed for like 10 minutes, alternating solos the whole time, it was really excellent. The rest of the band then walked on stage, and once again Sam announced a special guest, Jeff Austin !!!!! Jeff Austin is the mandolin player from Yonder Mountain String Band, a band I am practically obsessed with. Huge cheers came up from the crowd for him, which was really cool. Then with 3 mandolin players on stage, and the rest of the band, they played a rocking version of Sittin' On Top of the World, and closed the show with an all out version of Rollin My Sweet Baby's Arms. It was so excellent, I danced my butt off, and was so energized after the show I just had to stay out for a while longer, this was definitely the best bluegrass I have been able to see since moving back to Chicago.

Lubichev
07-10-2006, 07:30 AM
You suck. Not really, but you suck. Sounds like one hell of a time. I didn't know he played rock and roll-ish tunes.

jessecuster3
07-10-2006, 08:07 AM
You suck. Not really, but you suck. Sounds like one hell of a time. I didn't know he played rock and roll-ish tunes.


Yeah the late '70's, early '80's were kind of a dark time for bluegrass, so a number of the artists, tried to "modernize" the music, Sam Bush eased in rock, but still with a banjo, and John Hartford used his banjo to play some disco'ish tunes.


Most of it is forgettable.

meethraa
07-10-2006, 08:11 AM
Hard N' Phirm, "Rodeohead"

I will say no more.

jessecuster3
07-13-2006, 03:33 PM
I just started watching this: http://bluegrassjourney.com/ its really excellent. I was able to find it for download. I'm sure any of you can too.

berk
07-13-2006, 09:24 PM
Anyone ever heard of the "Hack n Saws" (probably mis-spelled)? Saw them live a couple nighs ago, very good. from Virginia.

jessecuster3
07-17-2006, 08:40 AM
Anyone ever heard of the "Hack n Saws" (probably mis-spelled)? Saw them live a couple nighs ago, very good. from Virginia.


You mean the Hackensaw Boys ? They are definitely good.

jessecuster3
07-17-2006, 08:45 AM
I got to see Cornmeal again this weekend at a street festival. They are so fun, everybody who walked by where they were playing, would stop and every one was dancing even though it was like 100 degrees out.

Check out their webpage: www.cornmealinthekitchen.com

and they have some authorized live shows available for listen or download here: http://www.archive.org/details/Cornmeal

Dreadstar
07-19-2006, 12:51 PM
Bluegrass? Love it. I grew up watching Lester and Earl on TV. Martha White, it's got hot rise.

In fact, to this day, I don't think I've ever heard anyone who played the guitar to level of Doc Watson. Oh, sure, there are guys who were faster, flashier whatever. But Doc was clean. Each and every note he ever played came across as if the note were rung from a bell. Pure, ringing, exact. Beautiful.

jessecuster3
07-19-2006, 01:12 PM
Woo hoo another fan ! Doc Watson is indeed awesome. Have you heard The Three Pickers live album, its Doc Watson, Earl Scruggs, and Ricky Skaggs ? It is about the best thing I have ever heard.

Spastic Minnow
07-19-2006, 01:17 PM
Coincidentally, listening to Nickel Creek's Why Should The Fire Die right now. Not that they're really bluegrass or even country on this album, very pop. But then that's the type I like, the pop tinged mountain-music flavor. Nickel Creek, Gillian Welch, some Allison Krauss. I used to DJ at my college's americana/folk music station, http://www.globeradio.org/ if you're interested (unfortunately their Realplayer link is not the best), and heard plenty bluegrass but it got a little old to me.

Dreadstar
07-19-2006, 01:33 PM
Woo hoo another fan ! Doc Watson is indeed awesome. Have you heard The Three Pickers live album, its Doc Watson, Earl Scruggs, and Ricky Skaggs ? It is about the best thing I have ever heard.

I'm pretty sure I have. It has Soldier's Joy on it, doesn't it? One of my favorite songs. I was just listening to Will the Circle be Unbroken while driving home from work last night.

berk
07-19-2006, 02:01 PM
I used to have a Ricky Skaggs bluegrass album on vinyl - "Family and Friends" I think it was called. This would have been the early 80s, IIRC. Great album.

jessecuster3
07-20-2006, 08:07 AM
I'm pretty sure I have. It has Soldier's Joy on it, doesn't it? One of my favorite songs. I was just listening to Will the Circle be Unbroken while driving home from work last night.


Yeah that's the one. I like Will the Circle Be Unbroken, but it gets a little too country in parts.

Gezora
07-20-2006, 10:08 AM
Ok, don't tell anyone else, but....

I really like Hayseed Dixie and Barbara Lamb.

That never leaves this thread, ok? NEVER.

....no one must know.

jessecuster3
07-20-2006, 12:42 PM
Ok, don't tell anyone else, but....

I really like Hayseed Dixie and Barbara Lamb.

That never leaves this thread, ok? NEVER.

....no one must know.

Come on man, embrace your inner Old Timey. Consder this your Bluegrass support group.

jessecuster3
08-18-2006, 01:32 PM
I found and have been listening to this great John Hartford String Band concert from Michigan State University in 1977. Its really amazing, and I guess in his later years he would not only play the banjo so amazingly, but he would also dance on a piece of wood while playing and it gives the music an almost Metronome sound while he is playing.



If anyone is interesting in listening to it, I can upload it to my ftp for you to access.

jessecuster3
10-20-2006, 02:45 PM
T-Minus 3 hours till night 1 of 2 of Yonder Mountain String Band, I am literally bouncing off the walls in anticipation.

cadmium_blimp
10-20-2006, 02:54 PM
I like bluegrass, mostly because it is what my grandpa listens to and I've spent a lot of time with him, so I end up listening to a lot of his music. I really like Earl Scruggs. I do believe I've heard a bluegrass version of "Johnny B. Goode" that wasn't too bad.

Big Red Spider
06-28-2007, 02:55 PM
Im from Missouri so there's no shortage of bluegrass here, but I was wondering is there "mainstream" bluegrass. I listen to a lot of local bands like Big Smith, Uncle Fudd, and High Strung Quartet. Does anyone else listen to hillbilly music? What albums do you like? Do people in other countries listen to this kind of music?

Jonathan Bogart
06-28-2007, 04:05 PM
Im from Missouri so there's no shortage of bluegrass here, but I was wondering is there "mainstream" bluegrass.
I'd call Alison Krauss pretty mainstream.

jessecuster3
07-02-2007, 07:43 AM
I'd call Alison Krauss pretty mainstream.

I would add Nickel Creek, as well.

Sentry
07-20-2007, 12:27 PM
I would say Old Crow medicine Show are as well.

They are without doupt my fav band at the mo.

They are finally cominy to the UK and Im going to see both of their shows in manchester and the London.

Hurrah, i can not fu<king wait!!!!!

Also into Earl Scruggs , he is aaaaaaaaaa wicked.