Here’s something new in the bluegrass world.
Andy Thorn, banjo player with Colorado’s Leftover Salmon, has released a music video for the first single from his upcoming solo album, Frontiers Like These. The song, Blazing New Frontiers, is a paean to his wife, Cecilia May Thorn, who has the distinction of being the first licensed marijuana broker in the state. It’s a pretty straighahead bluegrass song, other than storyline. But then, bluegrass and old time music have long celebrated the moonshiner as a folk hero of sorts, and pot use in not even illegal in many parts of the US these days.
Pot lovers know that Colorado and Washington were the first two states to legalize recreational use of the substance in 2012. Cecilia is recognized as a pioneer in the industrial growth and distribution of marijuana in Colorado, and the video shows her at work with clients, and going about her business. The song lyrics describe some of the problems vendors face, including the fact that banks are leery of accepting their business since the US federal government still considers the trade illicit.
Salmonites who watch closely may catch cameos from members of the band, in addition to Andy, who plays his banjo and sings throughout.
Blazing New Frontiers is out today, and its release just ahead of 4/20 is purely coincidental.
Andy is assisted on the album by old friends Jon Stickley on guitar, Bobby Britt on fiddle, and Miles Andrews on bass. He has known these pickers since his youth, growing up in North Carolina’s Triangle area, and he recorded with them over the 2018 holiday season when everyone was back home for Christmas.
Pre-orders for the album, due on June 21, are available online.