BLUEGRASS BARITONE SINGING
FEATURING RONNIE BOWMAN
Dark Shadow, No Number. One CD, $15.
BLUEGRASS TENOR SINGING
FEATURING RUSSELL MOORE
Dark Shadow, No Number. One CD, $15, both CDs $25.
(Dark Shadow Recording, P.O. Box 52, Joelton, TN 37080, www.darkshadowrecording.com.)
Stephen Mougin, singer/guitarist in the Sam Bush Band and respected producer and recording engineer, has put together two must-have CDs that match the talents of Russell Moore and Ronnie Bowman with multi-track recording technology to teach exactly how professional bluegrass artists treat harmony singing.
Each CD has five songs (“Little Cabin Home On The Hill,” “Mr. Engineer,” “Blue Ridge Cabin Home,” “My Little Georgia Rose,” and “How Mountain Girls Can Love”) with four tracks dedicated to each song. Track one is a full mix of the entire song with all three vocal parts (lead, tenor, and baritone). Track two is the chorus repeated four times with lead vocal only. Track three is the chorus repeated four times with either the tenor or baritone part alone. And track four is the entire song again with either the tenor or baritone part missing so that you can sing along.
The band is Mougin on guitar, Adam Steffey on mandolin, Megan Lynch on fiddle, Ned Luberecki on banjo, and Daniel Hardin on bass. This driving ensemble could easily be signed to a record deal and it’s worth the price of the CD just to hear the band. But, this is all about the singing. To be able to hear how Ronnie Bowman and Russell Moore sing baritone and tenor, respectively, makes these CDs essential for anyone who sings harmony in a band or at jams. Whether you are new to singing or have been singing harmony all your life, I guarantee you haven’t been singing like Mougin, Bowman, and Moore. And, although these CDs do not have “lead singing” in their titles, Stephen Mougin’s voice is one of the best around, and you can learn a lot just by listening to him phrase his lines with subtle runs, dips, dives, and beautifully sustained notes.
What all three of these guys have in common is off-the-charts tone that is the essence of the bluegrass trio sound. Highly recommended for anyone interested in the subtleties and power of bluegrass harmony singing. Get both of them. CVS