Link to Living Tradition Homepage






Adventure Music America AMA10862

Bluegrass, old-time and country fiddle legend, Darol Anger, has teamed up with four rising stars you've probably never heard of - I hadn't - to produce a lovely relaxed album of parlour session music. No pressure, nothing fast and furious, but this is flash playing from start to finish. Joe Walsh's mandolin shines immediately on Gravel Shore, one of three Anger originals here, a swing breakdown with plenty of scope for virtuosity. Walsh's own Pogo Big could come straight out of the same corn and cotton fields as the old standard Shove The Pig's Foot A Little Further Into The Fire, and beautifully showcases Lukas Pool on Deliverance banjo. In fact, the traditional feel of several of these tracks is one of the things I like most about this CD: Farewell To Trion is an old-time fiddle classic, expertly transferred to the guitar by Courtney Hartman, Homer The Roamer is a John Hartford composition which comes very close to the Scottish tradition and Denver Belle is another old favourite.

Perhaps the showiest number here is Vassar Clements' Fiddler's Passtime, a bluesy tour de force which demonstrates Anger's sure touch. La Ville Des Manteaux is almost a Cajun stomp, simple but compelling and these five masters weave it into a colourful cloth. Scarborough and High Ham are from Anger's pen, a musing descriptive piece and a "deadly badass" bluegrass fiddle drag. Canyon Moonrise is a beautiful traditional waltz which I know from the playing of Peter Ostroushko and John McGann: it features some solo picking from bassist Sharon Gilchrist, who is solidly there in the background from the first note of this recording to the last beat of Grey Owl. I haven't managed to work out the meaning behind the title, except maybe a reference to high-bass fiddle tuning, but if you want a taste of E-and'A there's a handful of websites to visit:,,, and - all worth a look.

Alex Monaghan

Secure On-line mailorder service
Buy this CD online from The Listening Post
The Listening Post is the CD mailorder service of The Living Tradition magazine.
This album was reviewed in Issue 102 of The Living Tradition magazine.