True Life Blues: The Songs of Bill Monroe

More Albums by Various Artists

Track Listing

1. Molly And Tenbrooks - Alan O'Bryant, Craig Smith, Stuart Duncan, Mike Compton, David Grier, Todd Phillips
2. True Life Blues - Laurie Lewis, Kathy Kallick, Mike Marshall, Tony Trischka, Todd Phillips
3. I`m On My Way Back To The Old Home - Del McCoury, Ronnie McCoury, Vassar Clements, Craig Smith, Todd Phillips
4. Highway Of Sorrow - Tim O'Brien, Scott Nygaard, Stuart Duncan, Todd Phillips
5. Old Ebenezer Scrooge - David Grier, Todd Phillips
6. Memories Of You - Alan O'Bryant, Pat Enright, Stuart Duncan, Mike Compton, Todd Phillips
7. Rawhide - Ronnie McCoury, David Grier, Stuart Duncan, Craig Smith, Todd Phillips
8. Can`t You Hear Me Callin` - Del McCoury, Ronnie McCoury, Vassar Clements, Jerry Douglas, Craig Smith, Todd Phillips
9. Letter From My Darling - Peter Rowan, Greg Garing, Bobby Hicks, Todd Phillips
10. Sittin` Alone In The Moonlight - Tim O'Brien, Ronnie McCoury, Richard Greene, Todd Phillips
11. Big Mon - Sam Bush, Jerry Douglas
12. Get Down On Your Knees And Pray - Alan O'Bryant, Del McCoury, Ronnie McCoury, Roland White
13. Used To Be - Kathy Kallick, Laurie Lewis, Jim Nunally, John Reischman, Tony Trischka, Todd Phillips
14. Scotland - Vassar Clements, Richard Greene, Chris Thile, Scott Nygaard, Todd Phillips
15. Travelin` This Lonesome Road - Peter Rowan, David Grisman, Herb Pedersen, Vassar Clements, Todd Phillipsn
16. Heavy Traffic Ahead - Pat Enright, Vassar Clements, Jerry Douglas, Ronnie McCoury, Todd Phillips
17. Little Cabin Home On The Hill - John Hartford, Ronnie McCoury, Mike Compton, Todd Phillips


The 17 newly-recorded songs on this album comprise a loving tribute to the man generally considered to have invented bluegrass music, and the album was timed well, coming out just shortly before Monroe's death in 1996 at the age of 85. The songs are mostly pretty predictable. The program leads off with the Nashville Bluegrass Band's rendition of "Molly and Tenbrooks" (on which Alan O'Bryant does a pretty fair Monroe impression), and proceeds through a hair-raising rendition of "I'm on My Way Back to the Old Home" by the Del McCoury Band. Other classics by various lineups follow: Vassar Clements and Richard Greene team up for a bracing run-through of the instrumental "Scotland"; Laurie Lewis and Kathy Kallick do great job on the title track; and Tim and Mollie O'Brien give "Sitting Alone in the Moonlight" a suitably haunting performance. Peter Rowan may be overrated as a singer, but as a former Blue Grass Boy and a tireless champion of Monroe's work, he has certainly earned the right to sing "Travelin' This Lonesome Road" and "Letter From My Darlin'." Highly recommended. ~ Rick Anderson

Personnel: Tim O'Brien (vocals, guitar, mandolin); Del McCoury, Kathy Kallick, Peter Rowan, Pat Enright (vocals, guitar); John Hartford (vocals, banjo, fiddle); Herb Pedersen (vocals, banjo); Greg Garing, Roland White, Ronnie McCoury (vocals, mandolin); Laurie Lewis (vocals, fiddle); Alan O'Bryant, Mollie O'Brien (vocals); David Grier, Jim Nunally, Scott Nygaard (guitar); Jerry Douglas (dobro); Craig Smith, Tony Trischka (banjo); Chris Thile, David Grisman, John Reischman, Mike Compton, Sam Bush, Mike Marshall (mandolin); Richard Greene , Stuart Duncan, Vassar Clements, Bobby Hicks (fiddle).