Bass man Allen Mills is the sole founding member of Virginia’s Lost and Found still touring with the band as they celebrate their 30th anniversary with Rebel in 2010. Over that span, he recorded some memorable albums with successive personnel changes, and saw the group leave a dramatic, lasting influence on the next generation of grassers – both with their relaxed musical style and hilarious stage antics.
Mills tells us that this reissue really is a “blast from the past,” reminding him that they were the original polyester boys back in the day.
“I’m really pleased and excited that Rebel Records would reissue some of our music, and their choice is some of our most requested material. We continue to hear comments on the music Gene Parker, Bubba Chandler, Steve Wilson, and certainly Dempsey Young created during their Lost & Found tenure.
This project also contains songs from the current band, that are such stellar musicians and I am so proud to have accompany me on the road!”
This upcoming Rebel compilation, Down On Sawmill Road, includes cuts from 8 previous L&F records, 14 tracks in all. It encompasses music from the early days, with Mills, Gene Parker on banjo, Dempsey Young on mandolin and Bubba Chandler on guitar, plus material with later members Steve Wilson, Barry Berrier and (currently) Scottie Sparks on guitar and vocals. Current banjo picker Ronald Smith also appears on cuts from a number of projects, as does new mandolinist Scott Napier.
The track listing really does offer a “best of” perspective:
|If Today Was The Last Day||Love, Lost and Found (REB-1829)||2009|
|Leaving You And Mobile Too||Sun’s Gonna Shine (REB-1638)||1985|
|That’s What Country Folks Do||Love, Lost and Found (REB-1829)||2009|
|The Rabbit Song||Sun’s Gonna Shine (REB-1638)||1985|
|Sawmill Road||January Rain (REB-1702)||1992|
|Sweet Rosie By The River||The Deal (REB-1658)||1987|
|A Daisy A Day||Love, Lost and Found (REB-1829)||2009|
|Sun’s Gonna Shine In My Back Door Someday||Sun’s Gonna Shine (REB-1638)||1985|
|Peace In The Valley||Hymn Time (REB-1668)||1988|
|Log Cabin In The Lane||It’s About Time (REB-1783)||2002|
|The Man Who Wrote Home Sweet Home||Sun’s Gonna Shine (REB-1638)||1985|
|Johnston’s Grocery Store||It’s About Time (REB-1783)||2002|
|Maple On The Hill||Endless Highway (REB-1607)||1982|
|Don’t Wait Too Late||The Lost & Found (REB-1589)||1980|
Down On Sawmill Road will provide a great introduction to this seminal band for new listeners, and many a nostalgic moment for 30 year fans.
The group is fronted by Tommy Sells and his wife Teresa, who started the group in Galax back in 1987. Throughout their time together, Big Country has maintained an unswervingly traditional bluegrass sound, again as pickers came and went. The 2010 edition has Tommy on mandolin and Teresa on guitar, along with Johnny Williams, a vastly under-appreciated vocalist, on guitar, Jeff Michael on fiddle, Lynwood Lunsford on banjo, and the recently-departed Alan Mastin on bass. Mastin was killed in an automobile accident in May of this year, returning home from a show.
The new CD will include a mix of band originals and well-loved traditional bluegrass favorites. A single for the title track, a Tom T. and Dixie Hall song, has been receiving strong radio play this past few months.