Straight From The Porch

Straight From The Porch - Curt Baker and Greg HoneycuttWe got a new CD recently that will appeal to folks who like to hear simple old time and folk melodies played on stringed instruments, in an unassuming, relaxed style. It’s called Straight From The Porch, and comes from Curt Baker and Greg Honeycutt, two fine players from southwestern Virginia, who play resonator slide guitar and flatpick guitar respectively.

Greg says that he and Curt have nothing against more modern string music, and follow it closely, in fact. He says that some of his favorite music comes from artists like Blue Highway, Kenny & Amanda Smith and Alison Krauss & Union Station.

“We love the more arranged and produced sound they get, and respect and admire their artistry. What we wanted to do with this CD, though, was record something more sparse and unornamented, that would really let the melodies shine through.

That’s where the title came from – we wanted it to sound like what you would hear when a couple of guys sit together on the porch to pick a few. That’s where this music came from, in earlier times, and we just wanted to recreate that sort of sound, as best we could.”

To help get that sound, they recorded primarily on older instruments, but not the high dollar ones now so prized by collectors. Curt and Greg instead used the Depression-era instruments more likely to be used by “regular folks,” the off-brand guitars sold through mail order catalogs like Sears and Montgomery Ward.

Much of the material will be familiar, though a few newer songs and a couple of originals are included as well. Greg and Curt brought in some well known pickers to help out, with both Mike Auldridge and Herschel Sizemore lending their skills to the recording. Mike joins Curt for a dobro duet, and Herschel joins the guys on an old timey cut of Big Sciota.

Both Curt and Greg have bluegrass backgrounds, and that influence shows throughout. Shannon Wheeler also guests on fiddle, and Lee Dunbar on banjo.

You can hear samples from all 15 tracks on CDBaby.

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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.