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|John Cowan||Primary Artist, Acoustic Guitar, Electric Bass, Electric Guitar, Vocals, Acoustic Bass, 6-string bass, Group Member|
|Giles Reaves||Percussion, Guest Appearance|
|Mickey Raphael||Harmonica, Bass Harmonica, Guest Appearance|
|Luke Bulla||Fiddle, Mandolin, Vocals, Background Vocals, Group Member|
|Patty Griffin||Vocals, Guest Appearance|
|Jay Joyce||Electric Guitar, Keyboards, Guest Appearance|
|Darrell Scott||Piano, Guest Appearance|
|Wayne Benson||Mandolin, Vocals, Background Vocals, Group Member|
|Jeff Autry||Bouzouki, Guitar, Vocals, Background Vocals, Bazouki, Group Member|
|Shad Cobb||Fiddle, Vocals, Background Vocals, Group Member|
|Bryn Bright||Cello, Guest Appearance|
|Andy Evans||Executive Producer|
|Jay Joyce||Producer, Engineer, Audio Production|
|Tom Riggs||Executive Producer|
|Eddie Lynn Snodderly||Composer|
Posted October 1, 2010
Playing Time – 46:47 -- Who They Are: Genre-bending innovators and adventurists What They Do: Progressive newgrass full of vocal and instrumental pyrotechnics Little Known Facts: Some of Cowan’s early rock and blues bands included Everyday People, The Sky Kings, Duckbutter and Grooveyard. The Songs: “Carla's Got A New Tattoo” opens the set with barn-burning instrumental work and inspired vocal spunk. The soulful "Misery & Happiness," a lamentation on the bittersweet experience of finding love and losing it, features gorgeous harmony vocals from Patty Griffin. "Working In The New Mine" harkens back to old school bluegrass, with a driving tempo, stellar picking, charged modulation, and acrobatic vocal harmonies. A melodic "Back To Your Arms" and Mark Simos’ "Hurting Sure" are modern country masterpieces that would sound right at home on country radio. “In Bristol Town” is a ballad with some old-time Appalachian character. The 6-minute closing track, "Drown," is the most emotional and controversial. It’s a disturbing and detailed disclosure about child molestation. Based on personal experience as a seven-year-old survivor, John felt it was a tragic story that needed to be told. Cowan collaborated with Darrell Scott on “Drown” and “Red Birds (In A Joshua Tree).” Darrel and his father (Wayne) penned “With A Memory Like Mine,” a sad song of a son returning frm war in a flag-draped casket. The Musicians: Besides Cow on lead vocals and bass, the band’s current lineup is Jeff Autry (guitar, bouzouki), Wayne Benson, (mandolin), Shad Cobb (fiddle), Noam Pikelny (banjo), and Luke Bulla (fiddle, mandolin). All but Pikelny contribute harmony vocals. Of Special Note: Six guests who are “special” offer up vocals (Patty Griffin), piano (Darrell Scott), cello (Bryn Bright), bass harmonica (Mickey Raphael), percussion (Giles Reaves), and “sonic onslaught” (Jay Joyce). Any Recommendations: The studio effects are a little overstated in a few places. Sound effects, echo, reverb and looping sounds have their place, and producer Jay Joyce could’ve used them a bit more sparingly to create certain intimate moods and soul-stirring settings. Their Bumpersticker Might Say: “Johnny C” for Secretary of Defense! The Bottomline Is: Explosive Ebullience with a capital “E.” Reviewed by: Joe Ross (staff writer, Bluegrass Now)Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted October 1, 2010
Great album but more importantly John Cowan shows again and again that he is the best singer in all genres bar none. Go to his live shows and you will be blown away!!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted October 1, 2010
"New Tattoo", the John Cowan Band's latest release, exposes the growing maturity of acoustic music's greatest voice. At the same time, this ever-tightening group of musicians makes a case for receiving group of the year honors, if not now, then when? While John's own "Drown" portrays the spirit and substance of a devastating personal experience, it is, respectfully, a counterpoint to the damned fine songs that lead to it. Add this to JC's credentials..he knows how to put a great team together! "Carla's Got A Cool Tattoo" is the perfect combination of pop punch and bluegrass spirit that John has always been known for. In my book, "Hurting Sure" is the year's prettiest song, followed closely by "Misery & Happiness". The killer list continues with "In Bristol Town", "Joshua Tree" and "Back To Your Arms". A great next step for John would be to stretch as a songwriter. "New Tattoo" is the real deal. Buy it.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.