Retrograss (Acoustic Disc)

David Grisman, John Hartford and Mike Seeger

By Bob Mitchell

A recent e-mail proclaimed, "Nostalgia is not what it used to be." Obviously, the sender has not heard Retrograss. Three of the best known proponents of classic American Folk styles have joined forces to create a colorful, and innovative release. The CD is a delightful time capsule, reminiscent of a vinyl record from 1920 - 1930s.

What sets this recording apart is the unconventional way Grisman, Seeger and Hartford deliver the goods. They took seventeen well-known songs from Bill Monroe, The Beatles, Chuck Berry, Jimmy Martin, Bob Dylan, Otis Redding, Big Mama Thornton and others. Then they turned the clock back and recorded each song in the style of Jimmie Rogers, Dock Boggs or and old time string band like The Skillet Lickers, and The Lonesome Pine Fiddlers.

The release includes a novel "My Walking Shoes Don't Fit Me," a respectful "Flint Hill Special," done clawhammer style, a jaunty "Rocky Road Blues," a soulful "Room At The Top Of the Stairs" and an unconventional A-major arrangement of "Jerusalem Ridge."

According to the liner notes, Retrograss is defined as a noun meaning music shifted back in time. Acoustic Disc is dedicated to the preservation and integrity of acoustic music, musicians, and instruments. This project certainly achieves that goal. To get a copy of this CD contact Box 4143, San Rafel CA 94913, 1-800- 221-disc or on the Internet www.dawgnet.com