For the past five years, fans of fiddle wizard Andy Leftwich have been suffering from withdrawal. Andy stepped out of the limelight in 2016 when he took his leave from Ricky Skaggs & Kentucky Thunder, and other than some studio work and an album Christmas music, the bluegrass world hasn’t heard much from him.
But all that has changed with the imminent release of a new project for Mountain Home Music. A debut single, releasing today, shows that that this fiery fiddler has lost none of his brilliance, with a clever new instrumental number called Through the East Gate.
It’s sort of like two tunes in one, starting out with Mark Schatz’s old time banjo and Andy droning away on his 5-string fiddle in E. But after a couple of times through, Scott Vestal’s low tuned banjo takes the fore, and the band shifts into a bluegrass romp with Leftwich back on his four string. Andy also provides a tasty mandolin solo ahead of a guitar break from Cody Kilby. Then they switch back to the old time vibe to end it out.
Andy says that this is exactly what he had planned for this one from the start.
“Through the East Gate is a tune I wrote with the thought in mind of combining old style fiddling with the new style of fiddlers that we hear today. I’ve always loved old traditional fiddling, and I wanted to somehow capture both the feel of the old style and combine it with the exciting licks and melodies that the newer style brings. This song reminds me of friends and family coming together to play music and to have a great time!
“I was so honored to have the legendary Mark Schatz join me on bass and clawhammer banjo. After we cut the track, we couldn’t resist recording a track of him dancing to this one, too!”
Have a listen. It’s a marvelous piece of work.
Can’t wait to hear more from this new project.