Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Sam Gleaves Wonder If Ain't We Brothers

Sam Gleaves is a Virginian musician who fell in love with Appalachian music the second he tried to play it.  The tradition, community, and passion of telling stories through music was something that drew Gleaves to this genre.  Coming from a family of storyteller’s it seemed like a no-brainer and he’s done a good job of honoring not only his family but the music itself.  Ain’t We Brothers is traditional folk that sounds as if it spans the ages and traditions of the Appalachian Mountains and it does so with endearment and honesty.

Ain’t We Brothers is the sound of nights spent outside on the porch spinning tales of dusty trails, wilderness adventures, heartbreak and love.   It’s not an overly complicated album but it doesn’t have to be, because in the grand tradition of this music all you need is a banjo (maybe a fiddle) and a story to share. As such, the record is a brilliant tribute to all the traditions intertwined in the mountains and features a smattering of Gleaves original material as well as a few old favorites that he gives a heartwarming folksy feel to.  I’m not generally a fan of such music but the charming and enthralling songs sound like they came from another century.   It’s good stuff.

In a world consumed by the Internet it’s nice to see that some still yearn to live the simple life.  Ain’t We Brothers is a world where intimate communication has more value than a text.  It’s something that we as a society are slowing forgetting and I applaud Sam Gleaves for embracing the tradition of Appalachian music.  It doesn’t get much more rustic than Ain’t We Brothers and that’s its greatest strength.  This is a great record to just sit on the porch and watch the world go by to and that’s always a good thing.

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