January 20, 2009
Earl Lee Grace
I was just getting ready to post The Dwarves debut record, Horror Stories, when I remembered this odd little record, a bluegrass record by Dwarves frontman Blag Dahlia. A few of these are Dwarves songs redone bluegrass style, but a few only appear here. The weirdest thing about this record is how good the performances are. All Dahlia handles is the vocals, but he threw together a great session band to lay down the music, and as a result, the vocals are the weakest part. His voice is too distinctively Blag to really work in this context, but it's an interesting little record nonetheless, and the instrumental tracks and the one with vocals by either Dee Lamnon or Karen Raymond (not sure which) could easily fit in on a "real" bluegrass record and no one would be the wiser. There's a fake little backstory in the liner notes about Earl Lee Grace, a 15-year-old banjo prodigy who randomly wandered into Blag's life just long enough to record this album. I wish I had the energy to dig through my cd bins to find it, cause it's pretty funny, but whatever. Funny side note, though, is that the Allmusic review doesn't get that this is a gag, and praises Grace's banjo skills, but points out he doesn't have the vocal chops to keep up with the music. Ha!
ps. Track #3 is misspelled. It should be Viodinah. I didn't notice until I'd already uploaded and didn't feel like fixing it.