Fans of the band High Fidelity won’t be surprised to hear that frontman Jeremy Stephens credits older generations for most of the influence on his music. With a new solo project titled How I Hear It, Stephens has produced an album with a bounce and vocals that hark back to an earlier time.
Stephens called on stellar cast for support: fellow High Fidelity bandmate and wife, Corrina Rose Logston on fiddle (and co-producer); David Grier on guitar; Mike Bub on bass; and Hunter Berry on fiddle. In addition, Ronnie Reno takes a turn on lead vocals on “Since Wedding Bells Have Rung,” a tune penned by his father, Don Reno.
Speaking of the late Don Reno, Stephens showcases his electrifying picking on Reno’s class “Sockeye” to open the album. Stephens also played with Jesse McReynolds, so there is his fine take on Jim & Jesse’s “Virginia Waltz.” Paul Brewster takes lead vocals on “I’ll Be Happy in My Home,” a song penned by his dad Willie G. Brewster and recorded by the Brewster Brothers many years ago.
There are a couple of old traditional on How I Hear It, the best of which is the instrumental “Lady Hamilton.” Other highlights include “Beautiful Blue Eyes” and “The Bells of St. Mary’s.”
Stephens mentions in the liner notes that he accumulated the songs while listening to them on the road travelling from show to show. All in all, he’s created an old time feel and throwback sound on this new, enjoyable project.