Travers Chandler has had a complicated relationship with professional bluegrass. His passion is to write, record and perform energetic and archly traditional bluegrass, with no apologies, and the frustrations of following his muse through personnel changes have found him dealing with occasional periods of inactivity.
But we learned just recently that Travers Chandler & Avery County are back, with plans for a new album this summer. Chandler has also been hard at it working on his other current passion, a biography of the great Charlie Moore. He tells us that he hopes to complete the draft by year’s end, and has begun loose conversations with a publisher.
“This is one of those things I’m hoping could be an important contribution. I’ve dedicated a lot of time to Charlie, and I am going to see this through. I know its the toughest challenge I’ve ever taken on, but it’s been a lot of fun earning the trust and getting to know the folks who knew Charlie best.”
The new album will be titled Archaic, a perfect fit for a band determined to keep it in the old time way. Work is expected to begin in late June at Patuxent Music’s studio. Travers will be on mandolin, Steve Block on bass, Ray Edwards on banjo, Matt Levine and David Thom on guitar, and Merl Johnson on fiddle.
Chandler promises some new material from his pen, and that of Ray Edwards, plus new ones from Gary Brewer and Todd Grebe. You can bet he will pull out a couple of Charlie Moore numbers as well. Tom Mindte and Patuxent generally turn new projects quickly, so we can hope to see Archaic by the end of the summer.