CD-306 The Kevin Prater Band "All I Ever Wanted"
Buy and Download >
Every once in a while a tenor voice comes along that underscores the high, lonesome quality that is bluegrass. Bill Monroe had that voice, of course. So did the late John Duffey of the Country Gentlemen and the Seldom Scene. On this recording, Kevin Prater stakes his rightful claim to that quintessential sound.
Kevin’s vocals commanded attention during his years as a multi-instrumental sideman (check out his work with legends James King and Melvin Goins), but he gained an even bigger following once he stepped from the shadows to front his own band. And here, on All I Ever Wanted, he cements the deal, shifting easily from the gritty, bluesy feel of “House of the Rising Sun” to the wistful heart-tugging delivery of the title cut, which he wrote with bandmate Tom Timberlake. Close your eyes on that one and it’s easy to imagine Duffey at the microphone. You’ll get that feeling on many of the other cuts, too.
But All I Ever Wanted is more than just a vehicle for Kevin’s voice and a tribute to Duffey, his musical hero. The harmonies are sublime at one turn, fun at the next, and every member of The Kevin Prater band takes a turn. And the picking is stronger than any I’ve heard on a Kevin Prater project. Much of the drive comes from the interplay of Jake Burrows’ powerful banjo and Kevin’s mandolin. Tom Timberlake and Danny Stiltner provide a stout rhythm section and Adam Burrows adds the icing with his fiddles.
The song selection is a bonus – works from bluegrass master Mark “Brink” Brinkman, the late Jerry Williamson, Larry Cordle, Hank Williams and that Monroe fellow, with a few public domain songs sprinkled in.
I could go on and on about songs, writers, arrangements and the like. But there’s no need for you to wait another minute. Grab the CD and give it a listen or three for yourself.