The All Stars are a special project band that Phil came up with following his successful scrap with cancer. He didn’t feel well enough to go out on the road full time, but wanted to have something to do musically after a long career playing reso-guitar with the biggest names in bluegrass. So he called on several of his friends he has played with in the past to put on a series on concerts, as everyone’s schedules allowed.
They were legit all star shows, featuring pickers and singers like Claire Lynch, Dale Ann Bradley, Kenny & Amanda Smith, Paul Brewster, Sierra Hull, and many others. The actual cast would rotate from show to show, but were always supported by a core band that included Phil on reso-guitar, Robert Hale on guitar, Jason Burleson on banjo, Alan Bibey on mandolin, and Steve Gulley on bass.
When live performances were shut down earlier this year, Phil set to work finishing up a recording with the core band, and the result is Swing For The Fences. It turned out to be one of Gulley’s final efforts.
Today they release a new video for an instrumental track, written by Bibey and Burleson, called Avery Stokes.
Alan tells us that it was a true tag team session creating this one.
“I had written the first section, and Jason came up with that second part that really makes the song to me.
When we were thinking of a name we bounced around a few ideas and I thought, ‘Hey we are both North Carolina boys, so how about the names of our home counties?’ I know we are both very proud of where we come from, so Avery Stokes it was.”
Swing For The Fences is available now from Pinecastle Records wherever you stream or download music online. CDs can be found at Amazon and other physical retailers.