Bluegrass That Goes Great With Pizza

One More Mountain (Independent)
The Fritts Family

By Bob Mitchell

There are many first-rate bands and it is difficult to be acquainted with all of them. Last year I was fortunate enough to receive an invitation to the Fritts Family IBMA luncheon showcase. Although they have toured extensively since 1986 and have a dozen recordings to their credit, they were new to me. Everyone in attendance received a warm, personal, down home greeting and plenty of pizza.

More importantly, the attendees received as fine a show as anyone could hope to attend. From start to finish the performance was no-nonsense, straight-ahead bluegrass guaranteed to put a smile on the face and a tap in the toes. The band's most recent project does the same thing. So after you hit the play button, sit back, turn up the volume and enjoy the exciting sounds of a hard working multi talented family. Pizza is optional.

Daughter Sarah contributes superb fiddle and most of the lead vocals. In addition she penned five excellent tracks including the poignant "I Still Think of You Sometime," a blistering "Riding Through Life" and a moving "I Am The Mountain." Her fiddling shines brightest on a cover of Bill Monroe's "Jerusalem Ridge."

Son Jeremy's phenomenal guitar work drives each song. Additionally, his outstanding mandolin chops are extra icing on a cake that is simply delicious. My fingers were sore after the disc ended and I was only listening. Weather a song requires a rapid-fire approach or a slower treatment, his technique is consistently clean, crisp and imaginative. Jeremy also wrote two songs and co-wrote (with Sarah) the heartbreaking "The Willows Are Crying."

Dad Larry furnishes solid banjo, occasional thumb-style guitar and lead and harmony vocals. He wrote three powerful gospel tunes for the album: "My Lord Might Come Anytime," "I Know My Lord's Gonna Help Me On" and "Get On Board." Each of these tracks contains the exceptional harmony that can only comes from a family.

Adopted family member Jim Bowman rounds out the band with his steady bass line and lead vocal on an original track, "Down At The Wayside Grill." "Grill," is a lighthearted, swinging song and one of my favorite cuts on the disc.

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