Steve Martin follow-up with The Rangers

Billboard is reporting that Steve Martin will be heading back into the studio in August to record a follow-up to The Crow, using The Steep Canyon Rangers as his accompanists. Martin and the Rangers are touring together this month in the central and southern US.

Gary Graff of Billboard says that Tony Trischka will be producing this album, which is projected for an early 2011 release.

Martin, who starts a new tour April 19 in Detroit and plays the Bonnaroo Music Festival on June 11, has already started previewing some of the new material at his live dates. “Jubilation Day,” which he says is a possible title track for the album, is “about what else — a break-up.” Other fresh songs include “Ignition,” “Go Away, Stop, Turn Around, Come Back” and an instrumental called “Hide Behind a Rock.” He hopes to record a live take of “The Atheist Song,” “a gospel tune for atheists,” to include on the album.

Meanwhile, Martin remains surprised and pleased with the success of “The Crow,” which spent 31 weeks at No. 1 on the Billboard Bluegrass chart (it’s still at No. 4) and, in addition to the Grammy also picked up two IBMA trophies. Martin is also featured on the “Rounder Records 40th Anniversary Concert CD, DVD and PBS broadcast.

“I couldn’t be happier,” says Martin, who between tour dates is flying back to Vancouver where he’s filming “The Big Year,” an adaptation of Mark Obmascik’s book about bird watching, with Jack Black and Owen Wilson. “To go from my living room saying, ‘I think I’ll do an album’ to winning a Grammy is very exciting. And you have to remember it’s a banjo record, so it’s a little bit puzzling. I don’t think it’s selling on my name at this point; I think it’s selling on the music…which makes me proudest of all. I deeply believe in this music and the musicians. They’ve been very kind and they seem appreciative that the music is…reaching an audience that the bluegrass world doesn’t usually reach.”

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HT: Mitch Finley

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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.