Acoustic Disc Downloads
Being a long-time lover of great guitar playing, I’ve often tried to seek out the best of the best. I thought I’d heard all there was until I discovered the world of the flatpicking virtuosos. Two of the legends, Tony and Wyatt Rice have come together in this incomparable work of Americana, blues, folk, jazz and, of course, bluegrass. Together! is what I consider to be the flatpicking White Album, laden with four discs of live, uncut flatpicking gold. Everything from the straightforward renditions to improvisational genius makes these performances quite extraordinary.
Tony and Wyatt Rice captivate their audience as they plow through tune after tune with style and grace. They effortlessly shift in style and form from fiddle tunes like “Billy in the Lowground” to “House of the Rising Sun”— something totally different. The jazzy “Swing 42” shows their vast appreciation of music and versatility. Then, its back to fiddle with tunes like “Fishers Hornpipe” and “Crazy Creek.” They blend styles in “Summertime/Fish Scale” and other classics that are mashed up into medleys, including waltzes and some good old blues. Wyatt Rice says that these songs hadn’t even been rehearsed; they’re being played by the two for the first time. Wow!
Although these performances are almost thirty years old, they will certainly endure the test of time as an essential listen for everyone from the novice to the distinguished flatpickers to just good folks who appreciate good music. In the linear notes of the album you can read endorsements from “the Dawg” David Grisman who put this compilation together and from flatpicking star Billy Strings.
This album represents two guitarists doing what they do best at a cozy tin roof venue in Hickory, North Carolina. The monaural recording is fitting as Tony and Wyatt blend seamlessly and often trade off on leads. The late Tony Rice’s spirit will certainly endure in the world of bluegrass today, and players like Wyatt Rice are carrying the torch onward.