Old Dogs

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - J. Poet
Bill Staines has been singing and writing first-rate songs for most of his life and while many A-list country and folk artists have cut his tunes, he still remains largely unknown outside of folk circles. Old Dogs probably won't change that, but it's another excellent album full of finely crafted songs and well chosen covers that showcase Staines' beautiful high tenor and understated fingerpicking. Staines isn't a singer who bowls you over, but his comforting vocals and melancholy melodies slowly insinuate themselves into your heart and leave you feeling warm and comfy, like an old friend who always shows up with good stories and a bottle of wine. "The Heavens and the Years" is...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - J. Poet
Bill Staines has been singing and writing first-rate songs for most of his life and while many A-list country and folk artists have cut his tunes, he still remains largely unknown outside of folk circles. Old Dogs probably won't change that, but it's another excellent album full of finely crafted songs and well chosen covers that showcase Staines' beautiful high tenor and understated fingerpicking. Staines isn't a singer who bowls you over, but his comforting vocals and melancholy melodies slowly insinuate themselves into your heart and leave you feeling warm and comfy, like an old friend who always shows up with good stories and a bottle of wine. "The Heavens and the Years" is a solemn meditation on aging, with Staines' stately piano and subtle churchy organ adding to the song's sanctified feel. "Old Dogs" sings the praises of a life well lived, with humor and compassion, "Savannah" is an ode to a beautiful aging city with a quiet bluegrass arrangement to augment Staines' tranquil vocals and the gracious Southern poetry of the lyric. "Once We Walked" is a poignant song about a long marriage that's weathered time to bind two souls ever closer together. It's the most affecting song on the album marked by Staines' intimate vocal, quiet soulful and profound. Staines also has a winning way with covers. "Cotton Pickin'" is a charming medley of Elizabeth Cotten's "Freight Train" and "Oh Babe It Ain't No Lie." Guy Clark's "Lone Star Hotel Café," the tale of a romance that never quite happened, is given a quiet arrangement full of subtle fiddle and dobro, and John Stewart's "Cody," a song about a homeless musician with mental problems, is given a simple poignant reading. The songs here are all about aging and the specter of mortality that hangs over us all, but Staines doesn't wax too nostalgic about the good old days. His ability to accept life's changes and limitations, and his belief in a better tomorrow, makes every tune here shimmer with faith and compassion.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 11/6/2007
  • Label: Red House
  • UPC: 033651020820
  • Catalog Number: 208
  • Sales rank: 136,600

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Bill Staines Primary Artist, Guitar, Piano, Vocals
Guy Van Duser Guitar, Electric Guitar
Billy Novick Clarinet, Bass Clarinet, Alto Saxophone, Soprano Saxophone, Human Whistle
John Curtis Banjo, Dobro, Mandolin
Larry Luddecke Organ, Piano, Keyboards
Stuart Schulman Fiddle, Violin
Mike Walsh Bass
Brian Wood Guitar
Stingy Lapel Percussion, Accordion
Oisín McAuley Violin
Technical Credits
Paul James Composer
Norman Blake Composer
Guy Clark Composer
Elizabeth Cotten Composer
John Stewart Composer
Joseph Spence Composer
Bill Staines Composer, Producer, Liner Notes, Concept
Larry Luddecke Producer, Engineer
Eric Peltoniemi Executive Producer
George Tomsco Composer
Chris Frymire Mastering
Frederick P. Williams Composer
Barbara Tomsco Composer
Traditional Composer
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