Noam et al mashing it in B

For anyone who may have scoffed at Noam Pikelny’s recent suggestion that he has been cramming on J.D. Crowe’s music of late, we offer further proof in the form of this video shot backstage during his current tour.

Noam is out with Barry Bales, Bryan Sutton, Luke Bulla, and Jesse Cobb to promote his new Noam Pikelny Plays Kenny Baker Plays Bill Monroe album on Compass. Here they are tearing up Born To Be With You, which Crowe grassified from the doo wop original in 1971 on his Black Jack (Ramblin’ Boy) album with the Kentucky Mountain Boys.


Now that’s bluegrass!

Check their remaining tour dates online.

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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.

  • Ned Luberecki

    Enquiring minds want to know: What’s that banjo Noam?

    • He said recently that he sold the top tension and bought another pre war – a 75 perhaps?

    • Turns out it was a Granada that he got.

  • Ned Luberecki

    He what?!? There goes the top tension market! But think of all the money he’ll save at the chiropractor.

  • Jon Weisberger

    Phooey on banjo wonkery, I’d like to know how the erroneous release year for Ramblin’ Boy got past everyone! 😉

    • Good eye, and a nice catch on the typo – should be 1971.

  • Jack Lawrence

    “DooWop” original? I always thought Crowe’s version of “Born To Be With You” came directly from the title cut from the Sonny James’ 1968 Capitol album. James did it rather uptempo,as well, as I recall.

  • Jon Weisberger

    I dunno if I’d call that doo-wop, but I think Jack’s suggestion is that the Kentucky Mountain Boys were inspired to work it up by hearing the Sonny James record. Which is certainly plausible, but you never know, especially with Crowe, who’s always had some pretty wide-ranging tastes. I’d imagine the authoritative answer’s in Marty Godbey’s book.

  • grasser

    Oh yeah!!

  • Dennis Jones

    Which one’s Al? And that is cut strong right there.

  • Alvin Blaine

    Back to the banjo wonkery..
    How is Noam going to do all his solos that had the high C# and high D in them? Like his last pass on “Road To Columbus” when he does the triplets off the 23rd fret, now that he’s back to playing a banjo with only 22 frets!!!