We spoke last week with bluegrass veteran Gary Brewer about his next project, a 16-track album called Home Stretch. He tells us that this will mark his 48th record over the course of 33 years in bluegrass. It will also mark his first project in wide release since 2002.
But he’s most proud that it will feature three generations of Brewers, including his dad, Jim, and his two sons, Mason and Wayne. The boys now tour with Gary’s band, The Kentucky Ramblers, along with Larry Beasley on banjo who has filled that role for almost 25 years, and Dan Boner on fiddle. Mason (13) is on mandolin, and Wayne (18) is on bass.
Brewer says of working with his sons…
“These two are the best rhythm section I’ve ever had. I guess it’s in their genes!”
He also shared a few words about some of the 16 tracks to be included on the next album.
“The majority are my original songs. There’s an instrumental of Mason’s, some hardcore grass, country ballad type tunes, a couple that Monroe biographer James Hines c0-wrote – they have an historic Kentucky vibe – and an old hymn I learned from a fellow at our church.
One I really like is Run Johnny Run that Jimmy Driftwood recorded. I found it on YouTube and changed it to old time. We do it fast, and then slow it down, and speed back up. Another is one I wrote called The Derby City Flash, a nickname I picked up over the years.”
Tracking for Home Stretch has just been completed, leaving only mixing and mastering to be done. Brewer is in discussion with a couple of labels, but may end up releasing it on his own label, StretchGrass Music Productions, early in 2014.