Bluegrass music spoken here

Just random thoughts about bluegrass music.
58 plays
Bluegrass Is Kinfolk

In 1976 the Kinfolk released “Bluegrass Is Kinfolk”.  


I remember those in magazines and comic books.

(via pickinpluckinstrummin)


Beatlemania: “A term that originated during the 1960s to describe the intense fan frenzy directed toward British rock band The Beatles during the early years of their success.”

BR5-49mania certainly doesn’t have the ring to it that Beatlemania does, but that’s the only way to describe what took place in my childhood bedroom on a summer day in 1997.

I’d waited for what seemed like months for BMG Music to send my package in the mail. My brother had joined the music club earlier that summer and nothing would do till I received my 12 CDs for the price of one. 

When the day finally came, I ran from the mailbox to the kitchen and grabbed the first knife I came across. I carefully but hurriedly ripped the box open as if what I was holding in my hands was the biggest box under the tree on Christmas morning. I rifled through the CDs looking for the one with the simplistic cover — a white background with a rotary-dial telephone baring the glorious name, BR5-49. 

I ran up the stairs as fast as my short legs would take me, with the CD clutched tightly in one hand against my chest, my other arm covering it for added protection. I carefully laid the CD on my bed and ran into my brother’s room to swipe his CD player.

Once inside my bedroom I grabbed a hair clip and dug into the cellophane covering the album and ripped it open. 

I thought about Bro. Ronnie and his Sunday morning sermons when I closed the lid on the CD player. I thought about his words on secular music and dancing, but the steel guitar and the lyrics, “Sometimes you gotta do somethin’ even if it’s wrong” got under my skin.

I twirled, danced, shook, jumped on my bed, twisted and shouted “hey-ho-A-lina!” at the very top of my lungs.  

This was the coolest thing I’d ever heard. BR5-49, I decided, would always be my favorite band.

Within a few weeks of going back to school that fall, my notebooks were covered in hearts with BR5-49 written in block letters in the middle of them. 

When the first show and tell rolled around, dressed in my brother’s hand-me-down flannel shirt tucked into rolled up jeans, I proudly shoved my beloved CD into my classmates’ faces and explained how this was the greatest album ever by the greatest band ever.

In music class on Fridays, when it was my turn to play a song of my choice, I remember a few of my classmates sticking the tips of their fingers into their ears and making disgusted sounds when Ms. Shelton turned on BR’s “Little Ramona (Gone Hillbilly Nuts).” 

During the dawn of the boy band craze of the ‘90s, I knew that despite what my classmates were telling me, that Chuck, Gary, Jay, Don and Hawk could really play and sing. And I was certain within my heart of hearts that Chuck Mead was a lot cuter than Justin Timberlake. 


To this day when I put on a BR5-49 album, the excitement I felt as a little kid is still there. It was all I could think of Thursday night while watching the original lineup on Music City Roots. And you can be sure that I wasn’t sitting still.

I made it through the remainder of my school years with pictures of BR hanging in my locker every year and waiting for the bus with their albums blaring through my headphones. I watched and listened as my peers went through a variety of musical phases. The music that sounded so good to them one day was outdated and uncool the next. 

As for good country music, I say it’s timeless. I might not have been around in the late ‘40s, but I know that when you put on a Hank Williams record in 2014, it sounds just as good as it did in 1948. And I know for certain that BR5-49 sounded just as good the other night as they did 17 years ago. Hillbilly Beatnik Music will never go out of style. 

From the depth of my country music lovin’ heart — thanks for the music, guys.

I think all music fans joined one of these record or CD clubs in their youth. Your story brings back a lot of memories. Thanks for the ride through the past.

24 plays
Undergrass Boys,
The Undergrass Boys

In 1981 the Undergrass Boys released this self titled album.  This one sounds like they were trying to win a Florida promotional jingle contest.  Nice imagination though!


34 plays
East Virginia,
Winds Of East Virginia

In 1978 East Virginia released “The Winds Of East Virginia”  This is the second album that was released by this band and it was on the “Major” record label.  Not a gospel album as such but most bluegrass groups mix a couple gospel songs on records and play gospel songs in their live sets.  



Crust fox playing banjo. I shoulda taken more time on it but ultimately got too damn excited.

Most folks won’t notice the milk crates or even know what they are. I did observe the fifth string tuning peg, so it is a redneck fox.

38 plays
East Virginia,
Pathways Of Tradition

In 1980 East Virginia released “Pathways Of Tradition”.  The liner notes for this record were very long and written by Mitch Jayne of the Dillards.  The music is excellent and original, not over done songs you’ve heard a million times.  I’d highly recommend you give this one a listen to.  Some of the prettiest stuff you’ve never heard on the radio!


22 plays
Currence Brothers,
Muddy Boggy Banjo Man

In 1980 the Currence Brothers released “Muddy Boggy Banjo Man”.

Jimmie Currence, banjo, vocal
Loren Currence, guitar, vocal
Malcomb Pastine, bass, vocal
Marvin Currence, fiddle
Bud Currence, vocal
Steve Wilson, dobro
Charlie Jordan, vocal (Good Hearted Woman)
Allen Lantz, bass, guitar

01 Muddy Boggy Banjo Man
02 I Can’t Get You Out Of My Mind
03 Good Hearted Woman
04 Back On My Mind Again
05 Mountain State Special
06 Calhoun Country
07 Steel Rails
08 I Can Almost See Houston From Here
09 Tennessee
10 Mr. D. J.


26 plays
Dixie Ryders,
Bluegrass The Ryders Way

In 1977 the Dixie Ryders released “Bluegrass The Ryders Way”.

Bob Hamlin, mandolin, vocal
Harold Staggs, fiddle
Todd Elam, banjo
Alton Elam, bass, vocal
Gene Bowling, lead guitar, vocal
Ellis Shockley, guitar, vocal

01 Dear One
02 Bringing In The Georgia Mail
03 Cajun Fiddle
04 Black Mountain Rag
05 Show Me The Way
06 You Didn’t Say Goodbye
07 Washington County
08 Warm And Tender Kisses
09 Alone In The Night
10 Foggy Mountain Special
11 Just Passing Through
12 Gone, Long Gone
13 My Blue Skies Have Turned To Gray
14 Roanoke


28 plays
Wally Bryson & the Blaylock Brothers,
Just Jammin'

In 1976 Wally Bryson and the Blaylock Brothers released Just Jammin’.

Wally Bryson: fiddle
Ralph Blaylock: guitar
Clyde Blaylock: banjo
Tillman Reeves: guitar
Ed Blaylock: bass

01 - Ragtime Annie 
02 - Roxanna Waltz 
03 - Champagne Polka 
04 - Cherokee Shuffle 
05 - Blue Sky Waltz 
06 - Gray Eagle
07 - Cincinnati Rag
08 - Last Chance Waltz
09 - Foolin’ Around
10 - Billy in the Lowground 
11 - Sally Johnson 
12 - Bill Cheatum
13 - Whistler’s Waltz



James D’Aquisto Archtype Mandolin

Real pretty!

(via mandoisland)

In 1978 the McPeak Brothers released Bend In The River.  Yesterday Larry McPeak passed away. (09-18-14) Thanks for all the great music Larry, now you’ll get to sing in a heavenly band!


36 plays
Wally Bryson and the Blaylock Brothers,

In 1974 Wally Bryson and the Blaylock Brothers released “Bluegrass”.  

Clyde Blaylock, banjo, vocal
Ralph Blaylock, guitar, vocal
Wally Bryson, fiddle
Pete Watson, guitar
Marshall Smith, String bass


Cowboy hats, pickup trucks and banjo/fiddle music —-  Oh Yea!

(via thecountryfucker)

38 plays
Red Taylor,
Bluegrass Fiddle "Taylor Made"

In 1978 Red Taylor released “Bluegrass Fiddle - Taylor Made”.  No artist mentioned, but it was implied that it was Jimmy Martins band.