Nathan Stanley, grandson of Ralph Stanley and member of his Clinch Mountain Boys, has released a new CD, My Kind of Country.
It serves as a showcase for Nathan’s voice and musical stylings as he prepares a move into traditional country music. Over the course of 21 selections, Stanley and a who’s who of country and bluegrass music cover some of the most popular songs from the 1950s through the ’70s.
Nathan is the son of Ralph and Jimmi Stanley’s daughter Tonya, but has lived with his grandparents most of his 18 years. I can recall seeing him on stage with his Paw Paw when he was only 5 years old, standing next to Ralph playing the spoons. Talk about learning in the shadow of a legend!
The arrangements on My Kind of Country owe more to country than bluegrass, but the record boasts of lead or harmony vocals from Grandpa, Uncle Ralph II, Rhonda Vincent, Larry Sparks, Ricky Skaggs and Del McCoury. From the country side of the aisle come contributions from Marty Stuart and Connie Smith, Gene Watson, Vince Gill, John Anderson, Patty Loveless and Little Jimmy Dickens, and Gospel greats Jeff & Sherri Easter, The Whites and The Isaacs also join in.
Audio samples for all 21 tracks can be found on Nathan’s web site or in iTunes. There is also a music video for one of the songs, Nathan’s version of Folsom Prison Blues.
Nathan is a busy boy these days. In addition to all the Clinch Mountain Boys shows, he is also working shows with his uncle Ralph Stanley II and has started booking country shows with his own band.
It seems that the Stanley sound will live on for quite some time.