We’ve posted in the past about David Grindstaff and his terrific debut CD, Here & Now, as well as The Troubadours, the group with whom he performs. Mountain Fever Records will have a project from the band in 2011, and will also bring Here & Now into the Mountain Fever catalog as a re-release.
Eric Hardin, banjo picker with The Troubadours, has a new CD of his own, One Good Reason, released this Fall. It serves as a fine showcase for this talented young picker, who has racked up wins in both banjo and guitar competitions across the US. Along with such notable pickers as Adam Steffey, Rob Ickes, Jim VanCleve and several others, Eric performs arrangements he played to win or place at Winfield, Merlefest, the Wayne Hnederson Festival and the South Carolina Banjo and Guitar Championships.
Steffey shared some words of praise on the CD cover…
“Eric’s sensibilities to both the melody of the song and to the other musicians with whom he might be playing is one of the things that I appreciate the most. His solos are never boring, but seem inspired and fresh without sacrificing taste or going too far over the top. This is an intangible that you can’t really teach, but most of the great players seem to possess. He plays what fits the song and makes it all seem effortless. When playing the guitar, he gets beautiful tone and clarity that always adds to the song. And when he’s on the banjo, he provides the drive that makes you play in that rhythmic ‘pocket’ that all pickers strive to get in.”
Just as Adam suggests, Hardin is both a capable technician and a skillful stylist. He offers up fine versions of banjo clasics like Groundspeed, The Old Spinning Wheel, Follow The Leader and Welcome To New York along with guitar favorite Big Sciota and Bill Monroe’s Big Mon.
Audio samples from all 12 tracks can be heard at CD Baby.