I'm not any kind of music snob. For me, it's like wine: I know what I like and what I don't like and those two bits of knowledge are all the expertise I need for an evening of enjoyment. When it comes to bluegrass/folk I like it all: the hard core twangy shit and the dabbling that pop and rock groups will do sometimes. What I do know for sure is that bluegrass was not AT ALL popular with wider audiences when I was in my teens. Country was having a popularity surge where it crossed with pop but bluegrass was still TOO COUNTRY. Well, ha! Apparently, you just have to wait and eventually what you like will be on the radio, too.
So here's me lifting a glass in thanks to all the listeners who have become part of an audience for my old musical favorite.
Lately, I've been obsessed with a song by Mumford & Sons called Roll Away Your Stone due to this line:
And so, I'll be found
with my stake stuck in this ground
Marking its territory of this newly impassioned soul
Something about that line speaks to me with equal parts comfort and inspiration. What an idea! The chance to stake out territory for a soul's second chance. Listen to the entire song here.
Here are a few of my favorites to call up when I need my bluegrass/folk fix. Listed in order from classic bluegrass through pop to straight up rock with folksy inspiration.
Mike and Amy Finders Band
--they don't seem to have much of an internet presence and that link only accesses one of their albums. :(
Carolina Chocolate Drops
--just discovered this band in the last few years. one of the best concerts i've been to in the last decade.
Alison Krauss and Union Station
--i think i've been listening to this band since their debut (or before? i heard them the first time at a festival performance). they are much pop-ier than they used to be.
Mumford & Sons
--of this list, this is the only group i haven't seen live. i always turn them up on the radio.
--very much a rock band but the folk influence is definitely there and their lead singer is captivating even in a video and live? you won't ever forget her!
As it inevitably does, listing a bunch of bands makes me think of a bunch more I like, too (Wilco likes banjos, too), but instead of going crazy with this list I'll ask if there are any other bluegrass lovers out there who have a recommendation for me.