Fort Collins CO quintet Finnders and Youngberg latest release, a six track EP entitled I Don’t Want Love You Won’t Give Until I Cry is an exemplar of contemporary bluegrass music, the band are fronted by husband-and-wife Erin Youngberg (bass, vocals) and Mike Finders (vocals, guitar) with Aaron “AA” Youngberg (banjo, pedal steel), Rich Zimmerman (mandolin) and Ryan Drickey (fiddle) completing the line-up. The songs are all originals, five from Finders and the sixth a collaboration between Zimmerman and Drickey, the highlights for me are the tracks on which Erin takes the lead Diner the EP’s opening track a particular favourite, I’ve heard a lot of similar recordings where there are, almost obligatory, recordings of traditional tracks and instrumentals that in some cases have only served to dilute the artists original music – in this instance the half dozen tracks work really well to distill the bands creative essence. . . . → Read More: Finnders & Youngberg – I Don’t Want Love You Won’t Give Until I Cry
True North recording artist Barney Bentall appeared on Beat Surrender back in May of this year with his solo album Flesh & Bone and now he’s back but this time as part of a collaborative bluegrass band The High Bar Gang who have being playing throughout western Canada for the last three years as headliners as well as supporting Blue Rodeo, the bands debut album Lost and Undone : A Gospel Bluegrass Companion features covers of gospel songs made popular by the likes of bluegrass legends Bill Monroe (Walking In Jerusalem, Mothers Only Sleeping) and the Stanley Brothers (Over In Gloryland, Daniel Prayed, Paul & Silas) as well as Hank Williams I Saw The Light and Julie Miller’s All My Tears.
Lead vocal duties on the recording are shared by Wendy Bird, Angela Harris, Shari Ulrich (Vocals, Fiddle, Mandolin) and Barney Bentnall (acoustic guitar) alternating from track through to . . . → Read More: The High Bar Gang – Lost and Undone: A Gospel Bluegrass Companion
‘Old punks never die they just go country’ goes the adage, Cincinnati based three-piece The Tillers describe themselves as ‘recovering punk rockers’ and they instil some of that ethos and state of mind into their current music, minimalist and direct American roots music that captures the essence of the past and brings it stompin’, hollerin’ and twangin’ into the present.
The bands latest release was recorded in a no nonsense analog straight-to-tape fashion and the trios instrumental prowess, vocals that back-porch essence are captured perfectly, it’s no surprise to hear they have a strong reputation as a killer live band and have picked up several local entertainment awards for their efforts and have being lauded by a BS favourite Iris Dement who’s said of the band ‘I could sit and listen to them all night long’.
The Tillers line up with multi-instrumentalist Mike Oberst (banjo, dulcimer, fiddle, harmonica,bowed . . . → Read More: The Tillers – Hand on the Plow
Melody Walker has made several appearances on Beat Surrender over the last few years starting with her EP III then her successful Indiegogo campaign that resulted in the release of her debut album Gold Rush Goddess last year, now she’s back again this time officially sharing the limelight with partner in life and music Jacob Groopman on their debut release as a duo We Made It home, the pair also play together in the Bay Area based progressive bluegrass band Front Country winners of the Band Contest at both the Telluride and RockyGrass festivals this year.
One of the albums highlight’s is the track Black Grace a secular humanist gospel song which recently earned Melody Walker the prestigious MerleFest songwriting award so all-in-all they are on a roll at the moment and the album was produced by another winner, the bluegrass artist Laurie Lewis who . . . → Read More: Melody Walker & Jacob Groopman – We Made It Home
Canadian fiddle virtuoso, singer-songwriter and step-dancer April Verch will be in the UK during October for a series of shows including an official showcase at WOMEX in Cardiff, the multi-talented artist has timed the official UK release of her last album Bright Like Gold to coincide and will be performing songs from it throughout the tour as well as favourites from her back-catalogue, April will be joined by her talented band – Cody Walters (Bass, Banjo, Vocals) and Hayes Griffin (Guitar) for the tour which kicks of in Gateshead on October 4th.
4 Oct Sage Gateshead – Northern Rock Foundation Hall Gateshead 5 Oct Derby Folk Festival Derby 6 Oct Halifax Square Chapel Halifax 10 Oct Live & Local Rural Touring Scheme Bramwell Memorial Institute Derbyshire 11 Oct Live & Local Rural Touring Scheme Ashton Social Centre Worcestershire 12 Oct Live & Local Rural Touring . . . → Read More: April Verch – Bright Like Gold – UK Tour Oct 2013
London-based bluegrass band Foghorn Leghorn celebrate their 21st Anniversary by releasing their third album on their own Slammer Records label, Not Before Time is officially released on August 27th, the release also marks the fourth anniversary of the band’s own club night My Grass Is Blue that’s hosted at The Betsey Trotwood in London on the second Thursday of the month where the band have honed their songs before moving into the studio at the tail end of 2012 to record the albums twelve tracks at Reservoir Studios in London – handily the studio belongs to the bands double-bassist Chris Clarke (who also plays bass with Danny and The Champions of the World), Clarke and the other five members Tim Kent (Banjo), Eamonn Flynn (Mandolin), Kev O’Neill (Dobro), Del Brooks (Acoustic Guitar), Paul Fay (Fiddle & harmonica) all share vocal duties on the album and they were . . . → Read More: Foghorn Leghorn – Not Before Time