Larry Stephenson is putting the finishing touches on a 20th Anniversary CD with The Larry Stephenson Band, which will be released on Pinecastle Records. Has it really been that long?
The primary tracking started in late October of ’08 at Ben Surratt’s Rec Room Studio in Nashville, featuring Larry’s touring band at that time. Kyle Perkins is on bass, Kevin Richardson on guitar, Jason Barie on fiddle, Kristen Scott Benson on banjo and Larry on mandolin. Kenny Ingram is now on banjo with LSB, and Mike Feagan on fiddle.
Larry tells us that the overall concept for this album is a new one for him.
“This will be the first CD I’ve recorded with multiple guests. I’ve never recorded an album like this in the twenty some albums I have out and Pinecastle has been wanting me to do this for some time now.
The guests I have are some of my best friends and people I admire and respect in the music business. Dudley Connell, Sonny Osborne, Ronnie Reno, David Parmley, Dale Ann Bradley, Del McCoury, Dailey & Vincent, Connie Smith, Marty Stuart, Ricky Skaggs, Aubrey Haynie, Ben Surratt, and Kenny Ingram who has been with me since January.
We recorded new songs and old songs that are favorites of mine that I’ve always wanted to record. All the guests were awesome and I can’t wait for everyone to hear what we have.”
With so many guest artists, scheduling has been tricky getting all the vocals wrapped up – not to mention Larry and his wife Dreama welcoming their first child earlier this Spring! He expects to finish up the last few details in the next couple of weeks, and start mixing shortly thereafter.
“I hope to have the CD on my table by mid-summer but not sure of a release date at this time. The July copy of Prime-Cuts of Bluegrass will feature Give This Message To Your Heart which includes Jamie Dailey and Darren Vincent. That’s the old Louvin Brothers song that the Osborne Brothers also recorded.”
Speaking of having a baby, Larry told us about how the birth and the vocals tracking sessions coincided…
“Most everyone knows Dreama and I just had a little girl, Falon Whysper. Falon was born on Saturday morning April 25th. We had Connie Smith and Marty Stuart scheduled to record on Monday evening April 27th at 7 pm. We were scheduled to come home with Falon on Monday morning but we didn’t leave the hospital until 7 that evening…..just as the session was to start.
We were driving home from the hospital when my cell phone rang and it was Ben Surratt. Connie wasn’t sure how to sing one line so I sang it to her over the phone. We had talked that morning and she understood and was very nice about mine and Dreama’s situation. As we were driving on I wanted to be there so bad and watch Connie and Marty sing but I had to get my girls home for our first night.
Then Dreama started telling me to drop them off and go on to the studio, her mother was at the house so she wouldn’t be alone. I kept saying no but she insisted. I arrived at the studio around 8:30 and Connie had finished and I got to watch Marty sing his baritone part. Connie, Marty and Ben are the best and it was a perfect end to a long and wonderful weekend.
By the way the song they sang was the old George Jones song Talk To Me Lonesome Heart. I sang lead, Connie sang tenor and Marty sang the baritone part and they did a great job. It may be the highlight of my recording career.
Dreama and I would like take this time to thank all Bluegrass Today readers for their prayers, cards, letters and gifts with the birth of our daughter Falon Whysper Sidney Stephenson. Dreama and Falon Whysper are doing great and I can’t wait for everyone to meet her.”