Brian Vollmer’s party includes him singing and playing fiddle, banjo, and guitar. Rosie Newton and Nate Leath also play fiddle with Brian and each other. Ben Townsend plays banjo and fiddle. Mark Schimick is on guitar and mandolin. Joseph DeJarnette plays bass. Sarah Jamison, Liz Pickard, and Max Paskin-Flerlague also sing and play. Most of the excellent material comes from West Virginia, Kentucky, Tennessee, Virginia, and North Carolina from sources such as Clyde Davenport, Bob Rogers, the Camp Creek Boys, French Carpenter and Wilson Douglas, the Stanley Brothers, Bill Burchfield, Roscoe Holcomb, and the Skillet Lickers. Vollmer includes one original, “What We Got’s Rich.”
The vocals are a bit rough, but the rest of the music is excellent. The CD opens with a lively rendition of “Arkansas Two-Step” in C from Rogers, with Vollmer and Newton fiddling. Vollmer moves to banjo for “Fall On My Knees.” “The Lost Goose” in B , learned directly from Clyde, again features fine double-fiddling by Vollmer and Newton. “Ladies On The Steamboat,” also from Davenport overflows with energy. “Elzik’s Farewell” is a fine fiddle/banjo duet by Townsend and Vollmer. “Birchfield’s Sally Ann” is more powerful double-fiddling. “What We Got’s Rich” is a fiddle tune Vollmer wrote in F when he was learning to play in that key.
As the title suggests, Vollmer tried to capture the sound and feel of an old-time music party. This one sounds like it was loads of fun with a lot of great music. (Patuxent Music, P.O. Box 572, Rockville, MD 20848, www.pxrec.com.)SAG