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Weiser Sunrise

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Album Review

Although the Foghorn Stringband released two albums before Weiser Sunrise, this 2005 CD is the band's first release on Nettwerk, signaling a new beginning and a broader audience for the group. Weiser Sunrise shows the band — fiddler Stephen Lind, mandolinist Caleb Klauder, banjoist P.T. Grover, Jr., guitarist Kevin Sandri, and bassist Brian Bagdonas — ready for prime time. Consisting of a number of instrumentals and vocal numbers, the album falls very much within the string band tradition that established itself during the 1920s and 1930s. Various revivals have kept the form alive while changing very little about it. As with other string bands, the Foghorn Stringband borrows old folk material like "Stagger Lee," "Be Nobody's Darling But Mine, Love," and "Golden Slippers." Keeping within the conservative spirit of string band music, the bandmembers recorded the album "live," meaning they sat around in the circle, just like in the days of old, and recorded as they played. The half-inch tape has done a fine job capturing the energy of these sessions, and listening to Weiser Sunrise isn't unlike listening to an acoustic band at one's local coffeehouse. What helps the Foghorn Stringband stand out in a genre that really doesn't encourage standing out is their carefree approach. This shows through best with the band's vocals on songs like "Short Life of Trouble" and "All Night Long," which have a spontaneous thrown-together quality (though never as loose and thrown-together as, say, the Holy Modal Rounders). This is a roundabout way of saying that Weiser Sunrise is a fun recording, and a fine introduction to the Foghorn Stringband. ~ Ronnie D. Lankford, Jr., Rovi

Customer Reviews

Weiser Sunrise

Foghorn fans: It's just what you hoped it would be. Old-Time fans: Yes, good-old Shortenin' Bread can still be made new. Bluegrass fans: Down in Little Egypt will convert you. Those unfamiliar with Old-time altogether: Here's a great place to start. This is the good stuff. Lots of tradition, but fresh like a clean pair of socks. A rockin' good time- All you need is a caller and a dirt floor. Keep it coming Foghorn!


Genre: Country

Years Active: '00s

Although it plays old-time traditional music that sounds like it could come from the 1930s or earlier, the Foghorn Stringband is made up of five men who grew up listening to rock. Nevertheless, they were attracted to Appalachian folk music and traditional country, and took up instruments to play it. They began encountering each other at the National Fiddle Championships in Weiser, ID, and in 2000 formed the first version of the band, which they dubbed Foghorn Leghorn. It featured Stephen "Sammy"...
Full Bio
Weiser Sunrise, Foghorn Stringband
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