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The Patuxent Banjo Project

The Patuxent Banjo ProjectPatuxent Records never ceases to present new and unique quality projects. The label never disappoints and this latest The Patuxent Banjo Project is certainly at the top of their offerings. This 2-CD collection of 40 banjo performances by as many performers of the 5-string instrument certainly will capture the interest of any banjo or bluegrass fan. The enclosed 44 page booklet offers a cursory overview of each of the artists included in this project.

The collection of the history of the Baltimore, Maryland region which became a major bluegrass region of America, is captured with the music on the dual CD set plus photos of the artists performming. This set captures the best of Washington, D.C., Baltimore, Maryland, Northern Virginia and Southern Pennsylvania as it is today.

During and immediately after World War II, tens of thousands of rural folks relocated from the Appalachian and Piedmont regions of southwest Virginia, West Virginia, the western Carolinas, and east Tennessee to the greater Washington-Baltimore area bringing their cultural preferences and sometimes talents as well. The main attractions came from expanding employment opportunities in the building, manufacturing, and service trades.

Those with musical ability could find supplemental and part-time jobs on the flourishing club scene. Country music parks such as New River Ranch and Sunset Park were not all that far away and within driving distance of not only the D.C. - Baltimore region but also greater Philadelphia. Musical prowess could also be displayed at the talent contests in Warrenton, Virginia or journey southward to the Old Dominion Barn Dance in Richmond. Local deejay Don Owens stimulated interest in bluegrass music by encouraging local musicians to visit recording studios. The most fortunate of these forged successful part-time, and for a few, full-time careers.

The Banjo Project

This monumental project is designed by co-producers Mark Delaney and Randy Barrett—noted players in their own right—to highlight the impressive banjo work exemplified by these forty banjo pickers who took part in making the Greater Washington-Baltimore area one of the major regional concentrations of bluegrass music in America. It achieves the goal that the producers and Tom Mindte set out to accomplish. In so doing, this constitutes a major sound document in the history of a major musical genre.

A review of this track listing is sure to illustrate the diversity of style and the broad scope captured within The Patuxent Banjo Project.

  • The Patuxent Banjo Project Disc 1:
    1. "Hot Burrito Breakdown" - Mike Munford
    2. "Going Home" - Roni Stoneman
    3. "Sugarfoot Rag" - Tom Adams
    4. "The Ghost on Hippie Hill" - Victor Furtado
    5. "Paddy on the Turnpike" - Don Bryant
    6. "Things in Life" - Randy Barrett
    7. "Hazel Creek" - Murphy Henry
    8. "Bird Bath" - Mark Delaney
    9. "Marching Through Glenville" - Bill Runkle
    10. "Allegretto con Melanzane" - Ira Gitlin
    11. "Farewell Blues" - Kevin Church
    12. "Ninety Degrees" - Mark Schatz
    13. "Lickity Split" - Chris Warner
    14. "Dazed" - Tim Kruzic
    15. "Cumberland Gap" - Paul Brown
    16. "Goldfield" - Bill Blackburn
    17. "Cedar City Blues" - Eddie Adcock
    18. "Banjoland" - Tom Neal
    19. "Scramble" - John Brunschwyler & Brennen Ernst
    20. "Dear Old Dixie" - Dick Smith
  • The Patuxent Banjo Project Disc 2:
    1. "Blue Grass Stomp" - Fred Geiger
    2. "Man Gave Names to all the Animals" - Cathy Fink & Marcy Marxer
    3. "Follow the Leader" - Merl Johnson
    4. "Dying on the Field of Battle" - David McLaughlin
    5. "Lori Ann" - Scott Walker
    6. "Phoebe's Lullaby" - Gina Clowes
    7. "Bolen's Bounce" - Marc Bolen
    8. "Once I Had an Old Banjo / Billy in the Low Ground" - Stephen Wade
    9. "My Little Home in West Virginia" - Bill Emerson
    10. "Angelina Baker" - Joe Zauner
    11. "Crossing the Blue Ridge" - Billy Wheeler
    12. "The Drunken Fiddler" - Reed Martin
    13. "Cripple Creek" - John Farmer
    14. "Rocky the Wonder Dog" - Keith Arneson
    15. "Sawmill Shuffle" - Pete Kuykendall
    16. "Big Sciota" - Doug McKelway
    17. "The Baltimore Fire" - Joe Herrmann
    18. "Purple Creek" - Casey Henry
    19. "Upper Elk Creek" - Walter Hensley
    20. "My Old Home in Baltimore" - Russ Carson

The list of banjo artists from Bill Emerson, Eddie Adcock, Mike Munford, Tom Neal Roni Stoneman, Murphy Henry and an entire array of others will give any banjo enthusiest a wonderful collection to study, enjoy and even learn from.

The Baltimore Fire

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