Buncombe Turnpike


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Lead singer and bass player Tom Godleski began Buncombe Turnpike in the fall of 1997. Since then, the band has recorded eight albums. They hail from western North Carolina and their music represents the region nicely. Bluegrass with a touch of folk and old-time make their highly listenable brand of music a hit with many folks.

Godleski wrote three of the pieces here including the title-song, “Asheville Summertime Saturday Night” (an ode to an institution in Asheville, N.C., called Shindig On The Green), and the train song “I Love Trains.” Guitarist Kory Warren shares lead vocals with Godleski, both sing harmonies, as does Don Lewis. Lewis plays some fine fiddle, banjo, and mandolin throughout the project. Elaine Trasker adds some harmony vocals, and George Buckner plays some nice banjo on several tracks. David Hyatt shows up on an original song he wrote singing and playing clawhammer banjo on “Flower Sack Dress.” They turn to some classic bluegrass on the final three cuts and nail “Little White Washed Chimney,” “Road To Columbus” (with some real fine fiddle work by Lewis) and “Walking In Jerusalem” (incorrectly credited to Bill Monroe).

There is a folk element to the downhome music here. They are not taken to emulating the latest styles, but play good old bluegrass as folks have in western North Carolina for decades. They pay homage to the first-generation masters with their approach. Lewis’ fiddle quotes Benny Martin, and Buckner plays the banjo straight-ahead Scruggs-style. This is fine mainstream bluegrass that is bound to please. The music is played with both feet planted squarely on the ground and not that city asphalt.(www.buncombeturnpike.com)RCB

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