Tuesday, April 10, 2007

'Sadie's Got Her New Dress On'

I have this bad habit.

I'll hear a song, go crazy, download or buy the album, play the song 100 times, then move on to something else.

Well, I'm doing it again with the first cut on bluegrass guru Doyle Lawson and his band Quicksilver's latest album, "More Behind the Picture than the Wall."

The song is "Sadie's Got Her New Dress On." I can't stop playing it.

Funny part is I can't figure out why. No doubt it's a catchy song, one the late, great Charlie Waller would've called "kind of a happy song."

Jamie Dailey's solid lead vocals come shining through, the song makes you feel good and, as always, Quicksilver's pickin' is some of the best in the bluegrass. Still that doesn't explain why I played the song five times in a row going to work this morning, twice at lunch and five times on the commute back.

Ah, who cares? Not everything has to make sense. Bottom line is this is a great song and a fine album.

Lawson cut his teeth playing with Waller and the Country Gentlemen in the 1970s. If you've never heard the Gents' "Live in Japan" album, run don't walk to either the CD shop or iTunes and get it. Here, I'll wait while you do so.

Got it? OK, good.

Back in his day, Lawson's tenor voice could fly in the clouds. His live version of Bob Dylan's "Walking Down the Line" is a real treat. Nowadays, he sounds more like a raspier George Jones, but nowhere does that sound any better than on this new album's title track.

Other highlights include the inspirational-tinged "The Selfishness of Man," the bittersweet ballad "Whatever Happened to Us" and any track that spotlights Terry Baucom's banjo pickin'.

If you're like me and prefer your grass to be blue, pick up this latest release from arguably the best band in the genre. And if you end up playing "Sadie's Got Her New Dress On" repeatedly, let me know what the deal is.

I still haven't figured it out.

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