Big day for Rural Rhythm

Wow… lots of new releases to note for March 22. What is it about the end of March?

Rural Rhythm Records has three projects that hit today. I’m sure that we will have more to say about each of them, but here’s a quick heads up.

First up is Kickin’ Up Dust from Grasstowne. This is a very strong project, easily the strongest yet from this talented outfit. Alan Bibey is on mandolin along with his partner Steve Gulley on guitar. This pair handle the lead vocals as well, with assistance from Adam Haynes on fiddle, Kameron Keller on bass, and Justin Jenkins on banjo.

You can hear audio samples on the band’s web site, or in iTunes.

Banjo legend Bill Emerson also has a new CD. Well… he has a new project coming out today, as a digital release, but the manufactured CD won’t be available until April.

The album is Eclipse, Bill’s fourth banjo release, with contributions from Tom Adams, Marshall Wilborn, Lynn Morris, Jimmy Gaudreau, and Janet Davis. The 14 tracks are primarily instrumental, but Adams, Wilborn and Jenny Leigh Obert each give voice to one song each.

Bill’s original tunes never disappoint, and on Eclipse, he again combines his twin passions for hard-driving bluegrass and Tex-Mex dance music. If you’ve not heard Bill’s Tejano banjo, you’ll be immediately taken by how well his hybrid style works on the old five string.

Audio samples can be found in iTunes.

Also out today is Lonesome Whistle from The Roys. This brother/sister duo brings their original songs and contemporary bluegrass sound to Rural Rhythm after a number of more country-inflected releases in recent years.

They brought in some top studio pickers like Mark Fain, Justin Moses, Randy Kohrs, Cody Kilby, Andy Leftwich, and Steve Brewster, and the result is a tuneful, highly-listenable album of upbeat music.

Audio samples in iTunes.

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About the Author

John Lawless

John had served as primary author and editor for The Bluegrass Blog from its launch in 2006 until being folded into Bluegrass Today in September of 2011. He continues in that capacity here, managing a strong team of columnists and correspondents.