Tara Nevins – Wood and Stone

By Chuck Dauphin

One might not think of Orangeburg, NY as a possible birthplace of someone who does Country Music the old-fashioned way, but that’s exactly what Tara Nevins does—at least on album. A college graduate trained in Classical Music, who has always listened to Pop, Nevins decided to record this album as a tribute to her roots, as well as her childhood.

The opening title cut has somewhat of a 60’s Folk / Pop feel to it, and it bounces off the record. Think of Peter, Paul, & Mary meets Skeeter Davis, and you’ve got it.  She continues with the Bluegrass-ish “All I Ever Wanted,” which features some gorgeous steel playing from Larry Campbell and some pretty zesty fiddle work from Nevins herself.

Nevins tips the hat to Loretta on the retro-sounding “You’re Still Driving That Truck,” which sounds like it would have been a top-5 hit from the ‘Coal Miners’ Daughter’ from 1968. There’s more than a subtle nod to the ‘Boom Chicka Boom’ sound of Johnny Cash on “Down South Blues” that should be of interest to fans of the ‘Man In Black.’

The centerpiece of the album, in my opinion, is the sweeping “The Wrong Side,” which features Allison Moorer and Teresa Williams. It’s a track sounds like it was from the O’Brother Where Art Thou? sessions, but the same could be said of the haunting “Stars Fell On Alabama,” where once again Nevins shows her prowess on the fiddle. This is an exceptional piece of music, one that I think needs to be heard—to prove that people are still cutting “Country Music” these days!

For more on Tara, or to purchase this album, log on to www.TaraNevins.com

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