Bill Monroe & The Blue Grass Boys

"Live At Mechanics Hall" is yet another fabulous CD from our friends at Acoustic Disc. I imagine David Grisman the album's producer must have derived great pleasure in assembling this fineCD; Grisman also recorded this concert 41 years ago. This classic treasure was recorded completely live in November, 1963 when Bill Monroe was 53. The Blue Grass Boys consisted of: Bill Monroe (lead and tenor vocals, mandolin), Del McCoury (guitar and lead vocals), Bill Keith (5 string banjo and baritone vocals), Joe Stuart (fiddle and bass vocals), Bessie Lee (bass), Melissa Monroe (vocals on tracks 7 & 8) and Mitchell "Bea" Lilly (guitar and vocals on track 16). Worthy of mention is that this is the only recorded duet with Bill Monroe and Bea Lilly of the Lilly Brothers. "Live At Mechanics Hall" includes 19 tracks with 12 songs never before released, including the aforementioned duet and two songs performed by Monroe's daughter, Melissa.

Bluegrass lovers will love this nostalgic album. Some of my favorite selections include: "On And On," "John Henry," "Blue Ridge Mountain Blues" and all of you Dead Heads will enjoy "Dark Hollow." "Rawhide" showcases Monroe's incredible dexterity on the mandolin. You will love this slice of American history even if you weren't alive when this CD was recorded; it is a gem.

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