I still have a bad taste in my mouth from this week’s Radio Daze piece, so I’ve been doing my best to reverse the damage with – ya know – real music. And it gets no more genuine than Steve Earle. I finally dug out this CD a couple of months ago after a few years of accidental hibernation. In 1998, Steve joined forces with bluegrass icons The Del McCoury Band to release The Mountain, a fantastic collection of bluegrass tunes that range from down & dirty songs about life in the mines, the Civil War and train ridin’, to the downright sublime.
The album wraps up with “Pilgrim”, which falls into the latter category: 5 minutes and 28 seconds of beauty, affirmation, and faith. The surrounding cast of characters in this tune ain’t too shabby either. Joining Steve on harmonies in this song: Emmylou Harris, Sam Bush, Kathy Chiavola, Tim O’Brien, Gillian Welch, and Dave Rawlings (who I just featured a couple weeks ago). On mandolin? Sam Bush. Dobro? Jerry Douglas.
Busy studio in Nashville that day. Anyhow, this is just a work of beauty. Not to mention the whole album is tremendous. So here…
Steve Earle & the Del McCoury Band – Pilgrim (mp3)
Pick up The Mountain on Amazon.