Tuesday, November 6, 2012

It's Election Day

If you don't vote...don't bitch.

Tim O'Brien and Darrell Scott - We're Usually A Lot Better Than This

Early on Tim O'Brien (I believe) quips "we're usually a lot better than this".  Well if that is the case I'd love to hear a good day because the playing and singing on this live disc recorded in 2005 and 2006 and released in October is clinic on how acoustic music should be performed.  Just check out the acapella version of Hank William's House of Gold to whet your appetite for the rest of the record.  Townes Van Zant's "White Freightliner Blues" positively smokes with some killer guitar-mandolin exchanges.  Darrell Scott's "Long Time Gone" is far more bluegrass than the Dixie Chicks version and is far superior (in my opinion).  There is a ton of great playing, singing and songs to be found on this great live record.  Well worth your time if you are even a casual bluegrass or Americana fan.

Usually a lot better than this...hard to believe.

Marley's Ghost - Jubilee

Marley's Ghost is celebrating 25 years of making music this year...and I had no idea about how good a group of musicians they are!  The opening one-punch of Rollin' and Wake Up Mama get things off to a nice country music start (real country sounding not Jason Aldean sounding) with very strong playing (there is not enough steel guitar in 2012) and some really good vocals courtesy of Dan Wheetman.

The album is all over the country map (in a very good way) from the western swing of South for A Change to very strong cuts featuring guests such as John Prine, Emmylou Harris, Old Crow Medicine Show and Marty Stuart.  All of the guests make great turns but this remains Marley's Ghost's show and the results are fantastic.  Another great example of the how ReviewShine can turn people on to sounds that you otherwise would have missed.

Here's a nice version of Levon Helm's Growin' Trade
New York shows please! Bobby Womcack's I Used To Lover Her

Melody Walker - Gold Rush Goddess

It's been a while since I have gone through my ReviewShine downloads and actually gave 'em a listen.  This has been a crazy year and I just haven't seemed to find the time.  Over the past couple of weeks I have been listening to a lot of new stuff while sitting around in the Superstorm Sandy aftermath.  We've been fine at the OldRockr homestead...just short on gasoline!

Melody Walker is a singer-songwriter out of the Bay Area and I have to tell you that I love this record.  I've been playing it quite a bit and continually find something new to like.  Great vocals, strong bluegrass-Americana playing and great songs.  "Gold Rush Goddess" is a little sultry, "Family Band" is a great tune that features The Buck Walters (Humboldt County, CA).  Jacob Groopman is all over the record with some very strong playing but the highlight here is Ms. Walker's vocals. 

A nice California twist on the Americana sound.  You can grab it on her website as a pay what you want release.  Pay something folks 'cause this is a good one.  It's gets the OldRockr1 Seal of Approval for sure.