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One Man Show (Bonus Track Version)

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Album Review

30db's debut album is called One Man Show, but it's really a two-man show, since this side project represents the duo of singer/songwriter/mandolin player Jeff Austin of Yonder Mountain String Band and singer/songwriter/guitarist Brendan Bayliss of Umphrey's McGee, who apparently met on the jam band circuit and bonded over their shared hometown of Chicago. (This group of musicians who continue to be members of other ongoing bands is filled out by guitarist Nick Forster of Hot Rize, bassist Eric Thorin of Open Road, and drummer Cody Dickinson of North Mississippi Allstars.) Another thing they had in common, according to their press bio, is that "both witnessed the end of long-term relationships," and when they began writing together for One Man Show, that experience was their inspiration. As it turns out, however, neither seems to have completely digested the experience sufficiently to render it coherently in lyrics. "Every time I try to tell the story/It seems to backfire," admits Austin in "Backfire," and Bayliss is equally tongue-tied in "Get in Line," singing, "If it's all made up, then I could never/Speak enough to lay it all out." But if the two artists cannot manage to detail their troubles, they do succeed in conveying a sense of distress. Still, they speak better with their fingers. However unhappy the words, the music is consistently engaging. Veering from catchy pop/rock to newgrass country-rock, 30db effectively play tunes sprightly enough to suggest that Austin and Bayliss may be healed by their artistry as musicians, even if they never get around to talking their heartaches out.

Customer Reviews

Not Interested in Bluegrass Artists playing Pop

Both of these musicians are great in their own realm, just not this one. As long as Austin sticks to his roots playing a mandolin that can only be matched by David Grisman,and a voice that is so unique it really can't be matched, I will listen all day long. Bayliss is a talented singer/songwriter whom I would pay to see live no matter what was being played. It just seems that the magic these guys create on a live stage can not be recreated in a studio. I did not like this album and I love both of these musicians. Even Yonder's studio album "the show" wasn't working, the studio albums just take so much away from the heart of their music.

Great Tunes

I have been waiting for this one for a while. Great songs from amazing musicians. Looking forward to seeing them live.

what to expect

This is exactly the great music you would expect from these two. Very pleased at what I'm hearing. Loved it 1st time through and expect it to grow on me a lot more.


Genre: Rock

Years Active: '10s

30db is a side project comprised of members of other groups. The founders are mandolin player Jeff Austin of Yonder Mountain String Band and guitarist Brendan Bayliss of Umphrey's McGee, who added Cody Dickinson of North Mississippi Allstars on drums, percussion, and keyboards; Nick Forster of Hot Rize on guitar; and Eric Thorin of Open Road on bass. The band released an album, One Man Show,...
Full Bio
One Man Show (Bonus Track Version), 30db
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Customer Ratings