Billy Strings and his dad Terry Barber are back with a new single, “John Deere Tractor”. The Lawrence Hammond cover is set to appear on the pair’s collaborative album, Me/And/Dad, out on November 18th.
This studio rendition sounds as if it was recorded in the family’s living room on account of the easygoing nature of the performance. Strings plays alongside the man who fostered his love of bluegrass and made him the man he is today, as the father and son trade acoustic guitar leads. The song takes on added significance as the lyrics recount a letter from a son to his mother, describing the cruel and duplicitous ways of the big city.
Also joining the pair throughout the album are bassist Mike Bub, mandolinist Ron McCoury, banjo picker Rob McCoury, and fiddler Michael Cleveland. Additionally, Me/And/Dad hosts a guest appearance by Billy’s mother, Debra Barber, who sings on the final track, Carl Story and Lowell Blanchard‘s “I Heard My Mother Weeping”.
First recorded by Larry Sparks as the title track to his 1980 album, “John Deere Tractor” was also famously covered by The Judds in 1984. The simple tune has also become a reliable participant in Strings’ live shows, appearing 34 times since its debut in 2012 (though 31 of those have been in the last three years), with its most recent performance arriving just last month at Stubbs Bar-B-Q in Austin on October 13th, per Billybase.
Listen to Billy Strings and Terry Barber’s rendition of “John Deere Tractor” by Lawrence Hammond, Me/And/Dad is available here for pre-order.
Billy Strings, Terry Barber – “John Deere Tractor” (Lawrence Hammond)