Straight Paths

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Charles Spano
On her solo debut, Straight Paths, Kristin Scott Benson proves that she is a banjo picker with great clarity and levity. Benson and her band, which includes her husband, Wayne Benson, on mandolin and renowned bluegrass guitarist Jim Hurst, run through an inspiring collection of instrumentals, including progressive originals like the menacing "The Hunt," covers like Jim and Jesse McReynolds' "Fireball Express," and no-nonsense traditionals like the hat tip to the Earl Scruggs tune "Sally Ann." Benson's greatest strength is that she can smoothly move from straight-ahead down-home playing to relaxed riskier picking that owes a debt to Alison Brown. Just listen to her version...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Charles Spano
On her solo debut, Straight Paths, Kristin Scott Benson proves that she is a banjo picker with great clarity and levity. Benson and her band, which includes her husband, Wayne Benson, on mandolin and renowned bluegrass guitarist Jim Hurst, run through an inspiring collection of instrumentals, including progressive originals like the menacing "The Hunt," covers like Jim and Jesse McReynolds' "Fireball Express," and no-nonsense traditionals like the hat tip to the Earl Scruggs tune "Sally Ann." Benson's greatest strength is that she can smoothly move from straight-ahead down-home playing to relaxed riskier picking that owes a debt to Alison Brown. Just listen to her version of "Foggy Mountain Rock" -- it's more laid-back than Flatt & Scruggs' version, soft and a little more ambiguous in its beauty, like sitting on the porch on a foggy mountain morning.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 6/11/2002
  • Label: Pinecastle
  • UPC: 755757650229
  • Catalog Number: 6502
  • Sales rank: 152,292

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Kristin Scott Benson Primary Artist
Michael Harris Bass
Wayne Benson Mandolin
Jim VanCleve Fiddle
Jim Hurst Guitar
Technical Credits
Laurie Lewis Liner Notes
John Eberle Mastering
Greg Luck Engineer
Tom Riggs Executive Producer
Bob Murray Art Direction
Kristin Scott Benson Producer
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Wonderful showcase of Kristin's talent and skill on banjo

    Only in her mid-twenties, Kristin Scott Benson is another example of how women are demonstrating that bluegrass is truly a multi-gender music with appeal for all generations, young and old. With crisp, exciting playing, she and her four professional sidemen (Wayne Benson on mandolin, Mickey Harris on bass, Jim Hurst on guitar, and Jim VanCleve on fiddle) serve up some mighty fiery picking on this all-instrumental project. Her opening original, "The Hunt" is a real-hot ripper, while she also shows that she knows how to tastefully pick a five-string on J.R. Shannon's slower "That's An Irish Lullaby." Kristin uses an open C tuning for "Foggy Mountain Rock" and her original "Joe & Smokey." The latter, along with "The Woodchopper's Reel," demonstrate her expert proficiency with melodic playing. From a musical family, she acknowledges her grandfather for introducing her to songs like "Just Because" and the Delmore Brothers' "Put Me on the Trail to Carolina." She dedicates "Sally Ann" to her grandmother. Her self-penned title cut, "Shining Paths," closes the album on a slower note that thanks God for showing His straight paths. Playing banjo since age 13, Kristin's musical talent matured quickly. She is certainly not "wet behind the ears," having appeared on several recordings, touring with Larry Stephenson and Laurie Lewis, and currently playing with Sally Jones and the Sidewinders. This solo project is a splendid collection of banjo instrumentals, both fast and slow, that demonstrate great technique and solid accompaniment. It's a wonderful showcase of her talent and skill. We'll be hearing a lot more about Kristin Scott Benson. She's part of the future of bluegrass music. (Joe Ross, staff writer, Bleugrass Now)

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