A review for the Folk & Acoustic Music Exchange
by Al Price
Much has been made of last year's Grammy winner, "The Great Dobro Sessions", and rightfully so. It included a group of accomplished studio musicians. That album demonstrated the versatility of the dobro, in a variety of musical genres, laying to rest the myth that dobros are only for luaus and hayrides.
The same is true for "Canadian Borderline", an album by Doug Cox of British Columbia. Cox surrounded himself with skillful and talented musicians (including Tony Trischka on banjo), weaving an eclectic group of songs into an interesting and enjoyable collection. Included are selections from Iris Dement, Duke Ellington, and Sam Cooke, Stevie Ray Vaughn, as well as, Cox originals and traditional tunes.
It is difficult to single out specific highlights as there's not a weak song in the bunch. "Lenny", the Stevie Ray Vaughn classic, is a beautiful tribute to Vaughn. A comedic arrangement of "Shuckin The Corn" will bring a smile to anyone, even banjo players. What a pity Sir Duke isn't around to hear "Caravan" with dobro, mandolin, banjo and guitars accompanying bass and cornet.
Cox is as impressive a dobro player as you can find anywhere. His vocals are reminiscent of Leo Kottke. The other artists who appear on Canadian Borderline are equally accomplished. I recommend this album without hesitation. It's a winner!