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Bluegrass from the Gold Country

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Album Review

An expanded version of the Vern Williams Band's only Rounder album, containing the complete original LP as released in 1981 and nine additional cuts recorded by the group in 1980. A very solid representation of the group's repertory, from bluegrass standards like A.P. Carter's "Foggy Mountain Top" and "When the Springtime Comes Again" and Bill Monroe's "You Better Get Right," to Stephen Foster's "Oh, Susannah" and "Old Black Joe," as well as traditional numbers like "The Arkansas Traveler." It's nearly an hour of some of the best West Coast bluegrass music to show up since Chris Hillman gave up the mandolin and the Hillmen in favor of playing bass with the Byrds, all very nicely remastered and thoroughly annotated.


Born: 1930

Genre: Country

Years Active: '80s

Vern Williams is one of the great unheralded masters of bluegrass music, a mandolin virtuoso who was a star in California throughout the 1960s,'70s, and '80s, and an influence on an entire generation of players and bands out there, but who is little known beyond the confines of the Golden State. His relative handful of recordings, either as a member of Vern & Ray in the '60s for Starday or leading the Vern Williams Band in the '70s, don't begin to indicate his importance to bluegrass music. Vern...
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Bluegrass from the Gold Country, The Vern Williams Band
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