Curtis Vestal is a veteran bluegrass performer, who has been involved in the music since he was a teen. Perhaps not as well known as his older brother, Scott, Curtis has worked alongside a number of well-known artists, starting when he was only 18 years old, when he and Scott joined Russell Moore to form the Texas-based group, Southern Connection.
In more recent years we have heard him playing bass on the Bluegrass 2020 and Bluegrass 2022 albums from Pinecastle Records.
Now Vestal has released a single, the first under his own name, called Cabin on the Hill. But it’s not the classic Flatt & Scruggs number we all know well. This is a grittier song, with a very different story, which he says he has been holding on to for some time.
“The song is one I found by a duo using just guitar, harmonica, and uke bass, done in a rockabilly style. I liked it and held it in my back pocket for a good while with the intention of working it up into a bluegrass tune. It talks about all the good stuff, and there’s an element that I felt was funny.
If you’re ever headed east toward Gatlinburg, there’s all these signs and billboards about Rock City. You’ve got to See Rock City! That this song had that in it was comical to me. Then there’s grandma, moonshine still, Hollywood, movie stars, and fast cars and a cabin on a hill.
This is my first time going out on my own to do a recording and I couldn’t be happier with how it turned out.”
Supporting Curtis, who plays “electric bluegrass bass,” is brother Scott on banjo, Tim Crouch on fiddle, Seth Taylor on mandolin, and Jimmie Haynes on guitar. Vestal sings the lead and tenor vocals, with Darren Beachley providing the high baritone.
It is a fun song, and these guys deliver a mean sounding arrangement.
Cabin on the Hill from Curtis Vestal is available now from popular download and streaming services online.