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the gospel express

 Guest Blog

 
Wayfaring Stranger - Sam Bush & David Grisman w/ Del McCoury; I love the way this starts with Sam's story about Dave loaning a 13 year old Sam his mandolin at a festival after hearing Bill Monroe - & Dave's bar mitsva comment. It sounds to me like it really comes togeather about half way through the tune.
 
Without God - Robert Randolph; this is just one reason why it's called 'sacred' steel.
When Your Time Comes To Die - Rev. Dan Smith; another in the tradition of harmonica evangelists.
Denomination Blues - Ry Cooder; a Washington Phillips number but Ry has such a seductive arrangement of it I couldn't resist. It's precision coupled with the impromptu spirit. That's kind of a hallmark of Ry's.
Fifty Miles Of Elbow Room - Rev. F. W. McGee
 
Where The Soul Of Man Never Dies - Floating Glass Balls
 
My Rock - The Swan Silvertones; these guys are among the very best there are.
 
Just A Little While To Stay Here - Geoff Muldaur; a medative little thing - as much a guitar piece as a vocal one and all the better because it's recorded live.
The Thing They Can't Take Away - The Persuasions; got their break from Frank Zappa who was real fan & devotee of doo-woop. You gotta love these guys, especially after you hear them do Zappa acappella.
 
Sinner You Better Get Ready - The Monroe Brothers; early Monroe when he still performed with his brother.
 
I Got To Cross the River Of Jordan - Blind Willie McTell; I love the way his guitar finishes & echoes the lines. The tensions between the words & the guitar begin the journey to a place where mere words can't go.
 
need somebody on your bond - Patrick Sky; try this at about 2 AM in an almost dark room, or in front of a dying campfire, & become aware of true silence all around.
 
Over In The Gloryland - Sam Morgan's Jazz Band; one of the first Aferican/American bands to record in New Orleans in the 20's. They recorded 8 songs, 3 were gospel numbers.
 
The Lord Is In This Place, This Is a Dreadful Place - Fairport Convention; their take on a Blind Willie Johnson song "Dark Was The Night, Cold Was The Ground".
 
He Never Said A Mumbling Word - Leadbelly; & neither did Leadbelly. This cut shows he doesn't need his guitar to move us.
 
Where Could I Go But To The Lord - Bonnie Owens; an example of Bakersfield gospel with a red hot & restrained country band.
 
He Got Better Things For You - Memphis Sanctified Singers; I hear this as the original but it also resonates the Holy Modal Rounders 1963 recording which was very different but just as good.
No Disappointments In Heaven - Bob Wills; that's Bob himself on fiddle & vocals. His band is smaller here but the sincerity is profound.
 
I Don't Intend To Die In Egyptland - Josh White; Josh started as a "leader"  or guide for blind blues singers. He became a blues singer himself (as Pinewood Tom) & a gospel singer (Joshua White -The Singing Christian). He later moved to New Your City and became a very popular folk/blues performer.
 
Prayer Changes Things - Sister Sarah James And The Sanctified Six; after hearing this do you doubt it.
 
Oil In My Vessel - Rani Arbo & Daisy Mayhem; a creative take on the song 'Keep your Lamps Trimmed & Burning' and it's got a great beat.
Will The Circle Be Unbroken - Blind James Campbell; this is a recording of a street band in Nashville.
 
You've Been A Friend To Me - Mike Seeger, Jenette & Joe Carter; couldn't let the show end without a Mike Seeger contribution. Mike died last week & this recording with Jenette & Joe Carter (A.P. & Sara's kids) rings absolutely true.
 
Crying Holy Unto The Lord - The Blue Chips
 
Down To The River To Pray - Alison Krauss & Union Station; an ending that signals a beginning.
 
Henry & Moggy

 

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