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Various Artists - More Ultimate Pickin': The Best of Instrumental Bluegrass

More Ultimate Pickin':
The Best of Instrumental

Various Aritsts

Pinecastle Records - PRC 1160

Available from MusicShed online store.

A review written for Folk & Acoustic Music Exchange
by Jim Zimmerschied

This is a collection of instrumental tunes mainly in the bluegrass slant performed by a variety of fabulous players. There are many anthologies of instrumental tunes on the market vying for your attention and dollars. The 20 tunes on this collection are great and offer a lot of variety both in the tunes and in the performers. Some of the featured artists include Scott Vestal on banjo, Clay Jones formerly with Ricky Scaggs on many guitar pieces. Mark Schatz on bass. A raft of great fiddle players —Aubrie Haynie, Rickie Simpkins, Ron Stewart, Jim Vancleve. There are 26 artists on the twenty tunes so it is a little hard to pick out individuals to mention but believe this—all are worth listening to.

There are a lot of fine chromatic banjo/fiddle numbers with Scott Vestal on the banjo. There are several tunes with an Irish flavor such as Boys of Blue Hill and Daley's Reel. Also Whiskey Before Breakfast—maybe Irish whiskey? Some straight ahead bluegrass numbers such as John Henry and Katy Hill. Some quieter tunes such as Closer Walk with Thee, The Waltz You Saved Me and Amazing Grace. Also some old timey music such as Little Darlin' Pal of Mine and Goodbye Liza Jane. As I said: a good variety on one album.

Here is what's on the album:

Play list:

  • Pretty Little Indian
  • Little Darlin' Pal of Mine
  • Whiskey Before Breakfast
  • Last Night's Fun
  • Big Sandy River
  • Boys of Blue Hill
  • Daley's Reel
  • When Johnny Comes Marching Home
  • The Woodchopper's Reel
  • Temperance Reel
  • Closer Walk With Thee
  • Cattle in the Cane
  • Katy Hill
  • John Henry
  • Stoney Point
  • The Waltz You Saved Me
  • Goodbye Liza Jane
  • Fire on the Mountain
  • Little Beggar Man
  • Amazing Grace

I enjoyed hearing Scott Vestal keeping up his banjo with Rickey Simpkins on Fire on the Mountain. Almost catches the CD player on fire! The fiddle/banjo interplay on Boys of Blue Hill was great. The resonator guitar in Phil Ledbetter's hands sings sweetly the tune Closer Walk with Thee.

You will notice that this album will find its way to your CD player and stay there for a long while. At least that's what happened to me.

Edited by: David N. Pyles

Copyright 2008, Peterborough Folk Music Society.
This review may be reprinted with prior permission and attribution.

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