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Album Review

You can't accuse Dan Tyminski of trying to cash in on his fame. After his star turn as the singing voice of George Clooney in the Coen Brothers' O Brother, Where Art Thou? and collecting a couple of Grammys and CMA Awards, he didn't quit his longtime gig as guitarist with Union Station, he just kept doing what he's so good at, pickin' first-class bluegrass guitar and adding supporting harmonies to Alison Krauss' luminous vocals. He did cut a solid solo album amid all the hoopla, and this splendid follow-up is another solid example of contemporary bluegrass songcraft, with nine tunes by Tyminski, two by fellow Union Station member banjo player Ron Block, and one by Blue Highway's Tim Stafford. The title track kicks things off with a classic ramblin' song accented by the mournful fiddling of Justin Moses and Block's understated banjo. Tyminski's vocal is full of stark yearning. "Some Early Morning" is a murder ballad in the tradition of "Long Black Veil," the tragic tale of a man falsely accused of a crime he didn't commit. Tyminski's unaffected vocal makes the tale even more heart-wrenching, while the harmony vocals of Cheryl and Sharon White add an extra measure of poignancy. Tyminski also wrings every bit of emotion out of love affairs gone wrong. "Heads You Win Tails I Lose" is built around the wordplay of the title, a slow mournful ballad of frustrated love that sounds like a classic. Block's "It All Comes Down to You" is a wailing song of sorrow that places the blame on the departing lover, even as Tyminski's vocal seems to wallow in its own unfathomable pain. "Who Showed Who" is another murder ballad, this time the tale of a woman who snaps under the strain of an abusive marriage and kills her husband, leaving her children without a family. The set also includes an instrumental, "Knock Knock!," that gives Tyminski a chance to show off his not inconsiderable skills on the mandolin. It may have taken Dan Tyminski eight years to cut this album, but its 12 tracks of bluegrass heaven make it worth the wait. ~ j. poet, Rovi


Born: June 20, 1967 in Rutland, VT

Genre: Country

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Dan Tyminski was born in 1967 in Rutland, VT. He was exposed to down-home country and traditional bluegrass music at an early age. His first instrument was a mandolin that belonged to his big brother, and over the years Tyminski also mastered the banjo and learned to hold his own as a vocalist. The Green Mountain Bluegrass Band was Tyminski's first step into the professional music world. He was an impressionable teenager at the time and performed all over the East Coast with the group as banjo player....
Full bio
Wheels, Dan Tyminski
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