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What the Brothers Sang

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iTunes Review

Bonnie "Prince" Billy has made a career out of blowing apart people's expectations and doing things as idiosyncratically as possible. His vocal timing, his pitch, and his phrasings hail from the Bob Dylan tradition of ignoring what would be the smoothest way to the harmony. With Faun Fables' Dawn McCarthy on hand to share the vocal stage, the duo, with professional session musicians behind them, work through The Everly Brothers' catalog. Except these aren't the songs best known to the world but often material from the Brothers' '60s era, when they were releasing albums to a more selective audience. Fans of the original songs may find these covers occasionally unrecognizable, though "Somebody Help Me," "Devoted to You," and the most-known song here, "So Sad," cling closer to the traditional lines. "Kentucky" is slow and haunting. "Just What I Was Looking For" throws together a grand arrangement redolent of countrypolitan music from the '60s.

Customer Reviews


In the late sixties, early seventies, the Everly Brothers transitioned from their chart topping sound which still reeked of the fifties, into a more country/country rock style. 30-40 years on, it's hard to see the transition, because what that style of music became we're already familiar with, grown tired of and reduced to nostalgia.

In covering this set of tunes recorded during that period by the Everly's, Dawn and Billie capture the transitional nature not by bringing the songs into the new century. Instead they work backwards, via Americana, country and even the Jefferson Airplane, and manage somehow to hold it all together. What people sometimes forget about Nashville is that it not only gave us Johnny Cash, but Blonde on Blonde as well. Dawn and Billie create a new Nashville sound, by way of Kentucky, Oakland and a thousand points in between.


Great album with a lot of great players. Make the purchase. You won't be dissapointed.

Great album....

Vinyl just arrived the other day... Great album. Both sides of the album are amazing. Their voices sound beautiful together. Great intro to those unfamiliar with the Everly Brothers, or Bonnie and Dawn for that matter. Favorite tracks.... "Milk Train", "Poems, Prayers and Promises" and "Just what I was looking for".


Genre: Alternative

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

American singer/songwriter Dawn McCarthy is one of the founding members of the roving acid folk collective Faun Fables and has worked extensively with Bonnie "Prince" Billy as well as recording and performing on her own. McCarthy grew up in Spokane, Washington in a large musical family, studying music from different parts of the world on her own in the local library as well as studying musical theater and writing her own songs. She traveled extensively before landing in the Bay Area and starting...
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What the Brothers Sang, Dawn McCarthy
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