HOWARD STEELE – In The Shadow of the Rim

HOWARD STEELE – In The Shadow of the Rim

 
In The Shadow of the Rim – Waltz Of The
Ocean – My Blue Mountain Home – It’s Such a Good Picture Of Us  – Going
There Alone – If I Could Open The Door – Down Home Music – If You Were
Here – Thirty Thousand Feet Over You – Good Bye Foggy Valley – One Wore
Blue One Wore Gray – The Greatest Mission
 
     
As a music preservationist working for the Smithsonian
Institution, I was just blown away by the first song on this CD, a
remarkably written “In The Shadow Of The Rim” written by Joe Martz. 
I’ve heard lots and lots of songs pushing the history limit, especially
trying to re-capture our past in America.  This particular creation is
one of the best written, and certainly one of the best vocalizing, I’ve
heard in a very very long time.
     
Howard Steele makes his home in Oregon, but somehow he
gathered together some incredibly good musicians for this project.  The
mandolin and fiddle on “My Blue Mountain Home” is spectacular.  Wow, I
take all that back.  There’s really only ‘one’ musician on this CD…
Roger Breggren who plays guitar, steel, Dobro, bass, fiddle, banjo, and
mandolin.  Whaaat?  Yes, I suspect the over-dubbing took a considerable
amount of time, but once Howard’s voice is added to the mix (it’s a
super good mix too by Gordon Kuryluk) it turned into a completely
wonderful listening experience.
     
Howard also has a knack for picking the songs that fit
his fine baritone voice, and he knows how to ‘sell’ a brand new
original song and story.  My favorite is the first one which is not only
so incredibly historical, it’s also just a plain good down home pickin’
story and good vocal. So, my favorite would have to be “My Blue
Mountain Home.”
     
Howard has a kind of ‘cowboy’ voice, but he’s a super
strong ‘country’ singer too.  The patterns of the music, and the
‘setting’ he brings to each and every song presents a wonderful blend of
original song, original planning, original story, and certainly
original creativity.
     
What a beautiful way to start the day in sunny Florida
as I review this lovely CD.  This one is definitely going to the Rural
Roots Music Commission, and I can tell you Mr. Steele, there will be a
positive response from them on CD of the year, and I wouldn’t doubt that
‘instrumentalist of the year’ could very well go to Roger Berggren. 
The calculations and voting doesn’t happen until later this year, but I
sit as one of the ‘counters.’  What a wonderful experience listening to
your CD, we wish you well in all that you do.
Bob Everhart, Reviewer

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