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Marbletown

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Album Review

Absolute quality has been a hallmark of Blue Highway's canon, and Marbletown doesn't lower the standard one bit. Starting with the title cut (by Mark Knopfler), the album is a series of peaks, from the aching "Tears Fell On Missouri," about a woman knowing her husband has left her and their children, to "Three Finger Jack," with its stunning mandolin and banjo work from Jason Burleson. By now these guys know how to make all the pieces fit together perfectly, and they do. They are all consummate musicians — and they're gifted writers too, well worth every accolade that's been heaped on them over the last decade. Some pieces do stand out, even amidst the high quality: "Quarter Moon," with its lovely harmonies, is a gem, while "Wild Bill" offers a delicious melody for the story of Wild Bill Hickock. Once again, Blue Highway have delivered.

Biography

Formed: 1994 in Kingsport, TN

Genre: Country

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

One of America's most celebrated bluegrass bands, Blue Highway have been one of the leading acts in acoustic country music since the group played their first show in Kingsport, Tennessee on December 31, 1995. The group's original lineup featured Jason Burleson (banjo), Rob Ickes (dobro; he'd previously worked with Alison Krauss, the Cox Family, and David Grisman), Shawn Lane (mandolin, fiddle, and vocals; a veteran with Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver and Larry Sparks), Tim Stafford (guitar and vocals;...
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Contemporaries