Tyminski debuts his new music on CBS tonight

The question has often been asked of late, “What ever happened to Dan Tyminski?”

A soulful bluegrass crooner and multi-instrumentalist, Dan has been largely absent from the bluegrass scene since Alison Krauss cut back on touring, and then returned promoting her latest country music project. Other than the odd appearance with The Soggy Bottom Boys, there’s been no sign of him this past few years.

Living in the Nashville area, he’s developed a reputation for preferring to play golf rather than hopping on the bus, even to pick up a sizable paycheck, but Tyminski hasn’t been completely idle. Inspired by the most recent of several life changing experiences, Dan has been brewing up a new sound, and recording a new album, that he hopes will set him up for a solo career outside the boundaries of bluegrass.

The first life changer for Dan came when, as a member of Lonesome River Band in the early 1990s, Alison Krauss invited him to join her band. She had met him when she guested on fiddle for the band’s 1991 hit record, Carrying The Tradition, and wanted him singing in her group. He made the move, then returned to LRB, only to leave for good a few years later. Soon Krauss’ name was on everyone’s lips and Tyminski was along for the ride.

In the year 2000, he was chosen by music producer T Bone Burnett to provide the singing voice for Geoge Clooney’s character, Ulysses Everett McGill, in the film O Brother, Where Art Thou. That song, Man Of Constant Sorrow, was ubiquitous on radio in 2001 and won both a Grammy and a CMA award.

Then in 2013, he was asked to provide the vocal on a track by Swedish EDM producer Avicii, Hey Brother, which was an international sensation. The song went to #1 in 18 different countries, and had download sales of more than 5 million. That, folks, is a legitimate hit song, and it was clear that Dan’s voice really lit up radio listeners worldwide.

A new album, Southern Gothic has just been released by Mercury Records, which highlights Dan’s current musical direction. You can hear the bluegrass influence, but is clearly targeted at a more mainstream audience.

He will perform the title track tonight on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert on CBS television, airing at 11:30 p.m. He’ll be assisted by a couple of familiar bluegrass faces, Shawn Lane of Blue Highway on mandolin, and Justin Moses on fiddle and/or reso-guitar. Dan knows how to pick ’em!

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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.