FAME Review: Tara Nevins - Wood and Stone
Tara Nevins - Wood and Stone

Wood and Stone

Tara Nevins

Sugar Hill Records - SUG CD 4064

Available from Funkyside.

A review written for the Folk & Acoustic Music Exchange
by Bob Gottlieb

Multi-instrumentalist and singer, Tara Nevins newest project takes us back to the roots of her music and the directions from which it has grown. First, she is both a college graduate and is trained in classical music; and she is one of the founding members of Donna The Buffalo, a very rootsy and old time music band, drawing far more on Appalachian and Cajun music than classical. There are times when the genesis of that band and the huge part she played in it (one of the principal singers and songwriters) are clearly evident on this disc that she recorded with the guiding hand of Larry Campbell in the producer's chair. Some of her very early story is germane to the how this all came about. Her parents escaped from Greenwich Village, however they took their sensibilities with them when they settled in Orangeburg, NY. Their love of old time music followed them to their new home, as well as many of the musicians of that scene, all of which was passed down to this daughter. They encouraged Tara in all her musical endeavors and with their support, and she was free to explore all the wide variety of music that surrounded her; folk, gypsy jazz, Cajun and Zydeco, bluegrass, and whatever else piqued her musical intelligence. All of which can be heard on the music presented on this disc in her fusion of these early influences. To have multi-instrumentalist and acclaimed producer (he was instrumental in Levon Helm winning 2 Grammies for his Dirt Farmer and Electric Dirt) on hand as a guiding force gives the disc that focused direction that makes it such a powerful force.

On this disc she plays fiddle (her primary instrument), accordion, triangle, tambourine, acoustic guitar on five tracks and sings both lead and harmony vocals. Larry Campbell as usual plays a plethora of stringed instruments as well as singing harmony vocals and, as said, manning the producer's chair. There is a very solid band behind her, made up mostly of the accomplished musicians that seem to gravitate to the area of Woodstock, NY, where Levon Helm's studio is located, including Levon on drums on three cuts. Jim Lauderdale and Allison Moore each stop by to do harmony vocal on a track. This is one of those discs that doesn't fit a niche and thus may not get a lot of airplay, however it is exceptional music and excellent songwriting; ten of the thirteen tunes were written by Ms Nevins, and she does sure brighten the day.

Track List:

  • Wood And Stone
  • All I Ever Needed
  • You've Got It All
  • You're Still Driving That Truck
  • Who Would You Tell
  • Snowbird
  • Nothing Really
  • What Money Cannot Buy
  • The Wrong Side
  • Stars Fell On Alabama
  • Down South Blues
  • Tennessee River
  • The Beauty of Days Gone By

Edited by: David N. Pyles


Copyright 2011, Peterborough Folk Music Society.
This review may be reprinted with prior permission and attribution.
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