The band is called The Kody Norris “Show,” and over the last few years, a listener only must take in a couple of songs to get it. The band’s latest release, Rhinestone Revival, is another step towards the top tier of bluegrass.
Although the single “Mountain Rosalie” was released last fall, the full album didn’t drop until June. It’s packed from top to bottom with good old-fashioned, hard-driving music made by people who are clearly having a good time.
The Kody Norris Show has been referred to as retro bluegrass and rockabilly, but frontman Norris likes to say it’s “dern good entertainment.” It’s not a brag—the group is the reigning SPBGMA Entertainer of the Year. Onstage, they dress in colorful rhinestone suits and cowboy hats.
Four of the songs are originals penned by Norris and they are some of his strongest work to date. There are also some nice treats as banjo player Josiah Tyree takes lead vocals on “I Call Her Sunshine,” while fiddle player Mary Rachel Nalley-Norris (Kody’s wife) steps out on “Endless Highway,” a take on a song Alison Krauss made into a hit 30 years ago.
Norris also is clearly channeling Jimmy Martin with his original work, “Baltimore I’m Leaving.” Norris also penned “Fiddler’s Rock,” “Please Tell Me Why,”and“Gotta Get My Baby Back.”
Darin Aldridge produced Rhinestone Revival and plays mandolin while his other half, Brooke, provides harmony. Jason Barrie adds an additional fiddle and in addition to the other three band members, Charlie Lowman keeps time on the bass.
One final warning: listening to this album will send you to look for your local bluegrass festival listing. It’s a lot of fun.