Cup of Loneliness
The modern bluegrass artists of today still stand out as the old souls of America, and David Peterson and 1946 are still carrying the torch with their eighth project Cup of Loneliness. This album is a concentrated focus on the classics that are highly relevant in the 2020’s. It echoes the emotions felt by millions in what has truly been a trying time not only for the country but the entire world.
David Peterson pulls no punches with a star studded list of musicians. Mickey Boles lends his picking on the mandolin along with beautiful backing tenor to Peterson’s lead vocals. Stuart Duncan, Aubrey Haynie, Tim Crouch and Shad Cobb all lend their immense talent on fiddle, fleshing out each track with the triple fiddle sound that Monroe made popular. Kent Blanton gives the album a strong backbone with his upright bass. The banjo is well covered with all kinds of picking from Brent Lamons and Jeremy Stephens, who plays Don Reno’s banjo “Nellie.” Also included are Mike Compton playing mandolin and backing vocals from Brad Benge and Larry Mars.
Upon first hearing this you might think it to be a collaboration between Bill Monroe, Earl Scruggs and Hank Williams. The commanding presence of the choir of fiddlers paired with Peterson’s vocals cut like a saw, giving that Hank feel on tunes like “My Sweet Love Ain’t Around.” Monroe can be felt on the driving melodies of “Kentucky Waltz” and “Traveling This Lonesome Road.” J.E. Mainer Jr himself gave his blessing shortly before passing for Peterson’s rendition of his father’s classic “Run Mountain.” The title track “Cup of Loneliness” comes from, legendary singer George Jones who would’ve been proud of Peterson’s cover. Despite the ominous theme of sorrow, there’s a mercifully upbeat quality to this record which ends with the Scruggs classic “Nashville Blues.”
David Peterson and 1946 have done it again. Like most of his recordings you can expect that honest, pure music Peterson is famous for and songs that could “bring a tear drop to a glass eye.” All in all Cup of Loneliness is packed with heavy tales of survival and musical therapy for the human soul.