Sparks, Cowan, King Wilkie interviews online

Here are three interviews we found this past few days in local newspapers’ coverage of upcoming entertainment events.

First up is King Wilkie, whose Reid Burgess was interviewed in The Dallas Morning News on July 23. He spoke with Mario Tarradell about the band’s decision to break with their traditional bluegrass sound for a more melancholy pop approach.

“I don’t think anybody wanted to go back in the studio and make the same bluegrass record,” Mr. Burgess, 27, says by phone from Richmond, Va. “Over the course of about five years we did every arrangement of a bluegrass song that we could possibly think of. I’m not the same person I was then. It would make sense to not do the same type of songs. We were steering ourselves in that direction. We were writing songs that sounded this way. We didn’t want to do the same thing again. It was starting to sound forced.”

You can read the entire interview on the Morning News site.

The Vail Daily ran an interview with John Cowan on 7/23. John spoke with Ted Alvarez about his current CD, New Tattoo, and also about his days performing with Sam Bush, Bela Fleck and Pat Flynn as Newgrass Revival. He suggests that he is enjoying returning to that Newgrass vibe with his road band.

"This incarnation of my band is the first time since New Grass that I’ve felt we could get back to that special place and make magic happen," he said. "For me it’s coming back to something I know really well ‚Äî It’s been a coming home of sorts. We’ve had this line-up of the band for over a year now and the response from the crowds has been overwhelming."

That full piece can also be found online.

On July 27, the Cabot Star-Herald in Cabot, AR carried an interview with Larry Sparks. The piece is primarily about the new Sparks release, The Last Suit You Wear, but touches on Larry’s long career in bluegrass along the way. At one point, writer Charles Haymes brings up how much bluegrass has changed over the years, with pop and country influences being absorbed into the sound.

However, Sparks has stood as tall as a redwood tree, remaining unchanged and loyal to the genre.

“I’m exactly where I belong,” Sparks acknowledged. “I love bluegrass music. I’ve always felt that bluegrass music needed me and I know that I’ve needed it. I think we’re a good match for each other. “

That one can be read on the Cabot Star-Herald site.

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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.