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The start of the bluegrass revival
on 27 February 2003
What makes this so special is the purity of Alison's voice and the quality of the music, some of which features Alison as instrumentalist as well as vocalist. Even though most of the songs are covers, they sound fresh and exciting.
The tracks are taken from various sources, including one from each of her own albums, but also including three previously unreleased tracks, plus other tracks that had not appeared on her albums. Even if you've got all Alison's other albums, you'll need this.
The set begins with a cover of the sixties pop hit, Baby now that I've found you. You may remember the original - a somewhat sad lyric but a very upbeat tune, which was a UK number one hit for the Foundations. Alison slows the song right down, in keeping with the lyrics.
The final track is a cover of When you say nothing at all, recorded for Keith Whitley's tribute album. This is a song that has spawned a number of covers, including Irish versions by Boyzone (who had a big British hit with it) and Frances Black. Even Frances cannot improve on Alison's version.
Between those two tracks are many other brilliant songs, including I will (from the Beatles' white album), Teardrops will kiss the morning dew (even better than the Billie Jo Spears version, which I think was the original) and the Lovin Brothers' I don't believe you've met my baby, later covered by Dolly on her Little sparrow album.
The O brother soundtrack, the various O sister compilations inspired by it and Dolly Parton's recent albums have all helped to increase the popularity of bluegrass, but this compilation pre-dates all of them and it was hugely successful. In any case, Alison herself appears on most of those other albums. So this is an important album in any collection of bluegrass music.