Coal Porters – Find the One

January 01, 1970



Sid Griffin —
formerly of the Long
, author, scribe and devotee for all things Dylan, Byrds and Gene
Clark — may have famously relocated to the U.K. awhile back but he never lost
his enthusiasm for his musical origins. When he founded his ongoing band the
Coal Porters, he clearly affirmed his intent to bring bluegrass to the fore
while infusing it with an ample dose of modern Americana as well. It was a bold
leap to be sure, taking an inherent American tradition and serving it back to
the Brits, but one would never know there’s been any change of locale given the
Coal Porters’ feckless and flawless delivery.


Combining a cheery
combination of banjo, fiddle, dobro, mandolin with an appealing and upbeat
delivery overall. That’s apparent here early on — in the opening volley of
“Barefoot on the Courthouse Lawn” and “Never Right his Wrong” — but that
spirit and sensibility take root elsewhere as well. Authenticity is achieved
overall, but it’s also worth noting some variance — specifically, an inspired
take on the Stones’ “Paint It, Black” that integrates the signature sitar, and
a stunning duet on David Bowie’s “Heroes,” both of which incorporate his
current motif along with a good old fashion sense of American know-how.



DOWNLOAD: “Paint It, Black,” “Barefoot on the
Courthouse Lawn,” “Never Right His Wrong” LEE ZIMMERMAN

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