The Infamous Stringdusters have announced the coming release of a new studio album which will serve as an homage to Bill Monroe, the “Father of Bluegrass.” The album, simply titled A Tribute to Bill Monroe, is due to arrive on May 28th via Americana Vibes.
The Grammy-winning progressive pickin’ crew—comprised of Andy Falco (guitar), Chris Pandolfi (banjo), Andy Hall (dobro), Jeremy Garrett (fiddle), and Travis Book (double bass)—has risen to widespread acclaim for its wide-ranging influences, but the band members all agree that the classic bluegrass sound pioneered by Bill Monroe is at the core of their craft.
As Andy Hall explains in a press release, “Bill Monroe was, as far as I can remember, the first bluegrass music I owned. I asked my uncle for a Bill Monroe CD box set and got it as a birthday present when I turned 18. The sound coming out of my speakers blew my mind. It sounded like ancient acoustic heavy metal.”
The Infamous Stringdusters recorded A Tribute to Bill Monroe from their respective homes while in quarantine, much like their 2020 holiday record, Dust the Halls: An Acoustic Christmas Holiday!.
Adds Andy Falco, “Once we realized that we were going to be grounded for a good while, we found the best way for us to stay connected musically (as a band spread out around the country) would be to record remotely, each guy from his own home studio. The silver lining of it was recording albums we always talked about but didn’t have the time to actually do because of our busy touring schedule. The most important thing is for the art to continue, and we were very happy to be able to still create despite our different geographical locations.”
While Monroe is best known for his mandolin playing, the instrument notable does not appear on the record. Instead, the Dusters decided to put their own spin on the foundational bluegrass material. As the band noted in a statement on social media, “‘A Tribute to Bill Monroe’ was created in the spirit of going back to our roots as a catalyst for growth and evolution.”
A Tribute to Bill Monroe and exclusive merchandise are available for pre-order now via the Infamous Stringdusters website. A portion of proceeds from the album will be donated to the IBMA Foundation, known for helping individuals, organizations, foundations, and corporations work together to support the future of bluegrass music.
Along with the album’s announcement, the band also shared its first single, a cover of “My Sweet Blue Eyed Darling.” Stream the track on the platform of your choice here or listen below.
The Infamous Stringdusters – “My Sweet Blue Eyed Darling” (Bill Monroe)
[Video: The Infamous Stringdusters]
The Infamous Stringdusters – A Tribute to Bill Monroe – Track Listing
1 – My Sweet Blue Eyed Darling
2 – Dark as the Night
3 – Sitting Alone in the Moonlight
4 – Toy Heart
5 – Old Dangerfield
6 – Travelin Down this Lonesome Road
7 – The Little Girl and the Dreadful Snake
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