I tell people not to pigeon hole musicians, yet I am my own worst enemy! Yesterday if you had asked me what I know about the The Charlie Daniels Band I would have replied, ‘The Devil Went Down To Georgia‘, which is a great song, with fabulous musicians playing, alluring lyrics , the best fiddle work, and an even better video, but aside from that one song I knew nothing about Charlie or his band.

If you were to ask me the same question today, I would tell you that this is a knock out band, and everyone needs to hear his new CD Deuces. Charlie is the name we know, but his band deserves great credit as well. Taz Digrecorio (keyboards), Charlie Hayward (Bass), Bruce Brown and Chris Wormer (Guitars), and last, but by no means least Pat McDonald (drums) are the musicians that are the building blocks. With Charlie as the cement, we have a very solid structure with this band.

Deuces is a great title, it sums this CD up so well. In every track they are joined by a guest, and those guests make a who’s who of the Country music world. It is not my usual style to critique a CD track by track, I’d wear out the keyboard and my fingers in the process, but this is a CD that I find it hard to pick favorite tracks to talk about, they are all damn good.

Being a huge fan of great fiddle music I have to zone in on Daddy’s Old Fiddle (track 6), Charlie is joined by the iconoclastic blond bombshell of Nashville, Dolly Parton, they create a very new and refreshing version of this well known tune. It is hard to believe that Dolly is now in her mid-forties, she looks years younger!

Of course track 5 is also high on my list, Charlie is joined by the Scruggs, Earl, Gary, and Randy. The choice of song is Maggie’s Farm, at first look this Bob Dylan composition seems like an unlikely choice, but these guys present it in such an endearing way, you have to love it. The Scruggs are very fine musicians indeed, and the Banjo playing by Earl is outstanding.

In Let It Be (track 9) we have Brenda Lee joining the illustrious company of Charlie and his cohorts, singing in her delightful style we are treated to a very haunting and memorable version of this song.

Brooks and Dunn step up to the plate with Long Haired Country Boy (track 10), what we listeners get is another fresh and exciting version of a well known and well respected tune.

I would be amiss if I didn’t mention some of the other people that came out and play with this outstanding band, Travis Tritt asks us What’d I Say, the most famous Red Neck Woman in the world Getchen Wilson takes on the classic June Carter Cash smash Jackson, even speedsters (and I love Speed) Montgomery Gentry are on this CD and they treat us to Drinkin’ My Baby Goodbye.

Great album! I am not a country music expert, but I think this one is going to rocket up the charts faster than Charlie Daniels can play the fiddle, and that’s pretty darn fast!

You can get you own copy of this very, very fine album from Amazon you can also check out their Web Site (which has lots of teaser tracks available). I can pretty much guarantee that you will want this CD in your collection.

Simon Barrett


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