The Speed Of Bluegrass

Your Essential Bluegrass Connection That’s our motto; that’s what we bring.

It’s also the name of a great new tune by Jim VanCleve, which we have adopted as our theme song. It will be available as a digital single on March 22.

Bluegrass Today commissioned Jim to compose and arrange a song for our theme, and to produce and record it. There was never any doubt but that he would pull a great one out of his fiddle, and he surely did. He then corralled some of the finest pickers in and around Nashville to track it.

Unsurprisingly, he chose a number of his Mountain Heart bandmates: Aaron Ramsey on mandolin, Jason Moore on bass, and Jake Stargel on guitar. He then solicited the services of Ron Block for banjo and Randy Kohrs for resonator guitar.

The Speed Of Bluegrass is a fiddle tune in three parts, showcasing a fine mix between newer and traditional bluegrass sounds – with a clever, whimsical tribute to some of the most standard licks and phrases thrown in for good measure. Here’s a taste:

The Speed Of Bluegrass: []

The song was recorded at Nashville’s Blackbird Studios with David Hall engineering. David and Jim did the final mix. The two of them are jolly jokers, making for a lighthearted, fun-filled time in the studio, as this video attests (shot and edited by Rob Haines).

Both a full-length track (5 minutes long) and an edited version are available to radio programmers now at AirPlay Direct. The digital single will show up in iTunes, and other popular online music sellers on March 22.

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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.