Lonesome County

Lonesome CountyOK… I’ve been promising to try and catch up on a backlog of new CDs we’ve received (or picked up at IBMA) – and this time, I really mean it! Since major news is slow this time of year, I’ll make a point to try and cover one each day until we get caught up.

One that has been lingering quite some time in my pile is the debut, self-titled release from southeastern Michigan’s Lonesome County.

Those of us who live in that fertile country where bluegrass music first emerged are justifiably proud of our musical heritage, but while we enjoy being part of that culture, we may sometimes forget that bluegrass lives and breathes all over the world. Just because a band isn’t from VA, TN, NC or KY doesn’t mean they don’t play the music with passion and precision.

Case in point is Lonesome County, whose members are drawn to the music as an avocation, and produced their first project earlier this year. Their sound – and many of the song themes – pay homage to the music’s Appalachian roots despite being closer to Motor City than Bill Monroe’s homeplace.

The band has written the majority of the material for this CD, both instrumental and vocal, most of it contributed by guitarist Chad Jeremy. Other members include Paul Shapiro on bass, Kevin Frank on mandolin, Marty Somberg on fiddle, and Lee Kaufmann on banjo. Lee is the only band member who works full-time in music, teaching private lessons and running an online banjo instruction site, BanjoTrain.com.

Lonesome County has provided both audio and video samples on their web site so that folks who may be unfamiliar with their music can spend a few moments and decide for themselves whether they will enjoy the CD.

At this point, online orders are not supported on their web site, but will be available from CD Baby later this week. Visitors to the site are welcome to contact the band via the web site if they would like to order a copy of Lonesome County right away.

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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.

  • Jon Weisberger

    Now, John, bluegrass didn’t emerge in Appalachia, it emerged in Nashville, TN. And Bill’s home town of Rosine isn’t in Appalachia, either. In fact, if you check, you’ll find that Motor City is closer to Rosine (though not by much) than Roanoke is ;-). And really, Motor City and southern Michigan have a rich bluegrass heritage that goes back almost to the music’s earliest days. No one should be surprised to find traditional bluegrass coming from there (or from places like Ohio, Indiana, West Virginia, Pennsylvania and Maryland).

  • Jon Weisberger – committed literalist. =)