Signup for a folk alley account

Cooking With New Releases. (Better Read This Before You Order)

August 22, 2008

Jakob Dylan Seeing Things.jpg Jakob Dylan ~ SEEING THINGS

After this release Bob Dylan's son may be better known for his own name. Having a famous father never hurts, but most of the songs on SEEING THINGS carry their own weight. And they are all very acoustic, mostly solo, or with a 2nd guitar playing subtle leads. Three songs offer sort of a roots based quartet - very catchy.
Jakob also covers a lot of ground. The first song emphasizes the existence of evil, but by the 8th song he is full of hope. He sings of war and children and about working the night shift. He identifies easily with the everyday person's troubles and triumphs making these songs engaging to listeners who secretly struggle to deal with their own problems.
The young Dylan has the same sense of observation as his father; the last song focuses on "the other end of the telescope." After all, that's where most of us are.


It's hard not to become excited when you hear from Liz Meyer. She's been working for years - 10 years - to promote Bluegrass in Europe. Meyer's efforts have culminated in the release of this live 2 CD collection. You'll hear groups from Belgium, France, Ireland, Italy, and the Slovak Republic, among many other countries. It's both strange and delightful to hear all the different accents on southern gospel quartets or on songs about missing the Blue Ridge Mountains. A few American performers who happened to be overseas are also included (Bill Clifton, Claire Lynch, and the Chapmans).

Not every arrangement of well know songs is original, and in fact, the groups with their own songs excel, and those are the ones Folk Alley will play (Meantime, Carmel Sheerin, Hickory Project) Overall, this is a solid release, and the result of a lot of love and hard work, especially considering Liz's personal struggles with her own health.

I will never forget standing behind Bill Monroe backstage at a festival years ago watching him watch a bluegrass band from the former Soviet Union (Kukuruza). I couldn't tell if it was sinking in what a huge impact this man had on so many people from around the world. To make sure he knew - I tapped him on the shoulder and told him.

Feufollet ~ COW ISLAND HOP

Along with The Pine Leaf Boys, Feufollet represents Cajun youth. Since we're seeing so many young Bluegrass bands, Americana/roots groups, Celtic and French Canadian ensembles there's no reason to be surprised. You'll hear Cajun tradition all right with fiddle and accordion, but Feufollet ("fuf fah lay") adds almost a rock energy and a jazz like approach in their arrangements. For example, you'll often hear the fiddle, accordion and guitar players splitting breaks and taking solos instead of the more traditional ensemble playing. It's still dance music, but it's fun to listen to it even when you're not dancing.

There are several different singers, but the standout is Anna Laura Edmiston. A female lead singer in this genre is not common. But then, nothing this group brings to the table is what you've had before. Try "Femme L'A Dit" which fuses Cajun with New Orleans Jazz. What a hoot. I would have seen this group at Merlefest last year, but they were playing in the student center to a restricted crowd of 18 and under. 18 and under? Usually my fake ID works to my advantage. Darn!

Donna the Buffalo Silverlined.jpgDonna the Buffalo ~ SILVERLINED

Despite some changes over the years, Donna the Buffalo continues to rage on. Tara Nevins, on fiddle & accordion, and Jeb Puryear on guitar and the cool hat are the original members still remaining. Kathy Ziegler now plays organ to keep the original sound, and she doubles on piano on several of the songs on SILVERLINED. Guitar whiz Tyler Grant is a special guest as is Bela Fleck on two numbers.

Like Feufollet above, it's fun to dance, groove, or simply drive a car with Donna the Buffalo - it's great road music. The group has also always offered, however, social or philosophical motifs. That's what makes the songs worth hearing over and over. "Beauty Within," by Tara, warns of fading youth; "The Call," featuring Jeb, reminds us of how precious and temporary life is. The group is getting older, and if you are too, it's nice to know that you are still invited to keep dancing with Donna.

Posted by Jim Blum at August 22, 2008 4:31 PM

Support Folk Alley During Our Spring Fund Drive!


Recent Topics



October 2015
Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
            1 2 3
4 5 6 7 8 9 10
11 12 13 14 15 16 17
18 19 20 21 22 23 24
25 26 27 28 29 30 31

September 2015

August 2015

July 2015

June 2015

May 2015

April 2015

March 2015

February 2015

January 2015

December 2014

October 2014

September 2014

August 2014

July 2014

June 2014

April 2014

March 2014

February 2014

January 2014

December 2013

November 2013

October 2013

September 2013

August 2013

July 2013

June 2013

May 2013

April 2013

March 2013

February 2013

December 2012

November 2012

October 2012

September 2012

August 2012

July 2012

June 2012

May 2012

April 2012

March 2012

February 2012

January 2012

December 2011

November 2011

October 2011

September 2011

August 2011

July 2011

June 2011

May 2011

April 2011

March 2011

February 2011

January 2011

December 2010

November 2010

October 2010

September 2010

August 2010

July 2010

May 2010

April 2010

March 2010

February 2010

January 2010

December 2009

November 2009

October 2009

September 2009

August 2009

July 2009

June 2009

May 2009

April 2009

March 2009

February 2009

January 2009

December 2008

November 2008

October 2008

September 2008

August 2008

July 2008

June 2008

May 2008

April 2008

March 2008

February 2008

January 2008

December 2007

November 2007

October 2007

September 2007

August 2007

July 2007

June 2007

May 2007

April 2007

March 2007

February 2007

January 2007

December 2006

November 2006

October 2006

September 2006

August 2006

July 2006

June 2006

May 2006

April 2006

March 2006

February 2006

January 2006

December 2005

November 2005

October 2005

September 2005

August 2005

July 2005

June 2005

May 2005

April 2005

March 2005

February 2005

January 2005

December 2004

November 2004

October 2004

September 2004

August 2004

July 2004

June 2004

May 2004

April 2004

March 2004

February 2004

January 2004

December 2003

November 2003

October 2003

September 2003

August 2003