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Draw Closer *

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Album: Draw Closer *
# Song Title   Time
1)    Katie Dear
2)    Those Blue Eyes
3)    Soldier's Farewell
4)    Poor Drunkard's Dream
5)    Little Willie
6)    My Closest Neighbor
7)    Climbing Up the Golden Stairs
8)    Dying Ranger, The
9)    Love Will Roll the Clouds Away
10)    Salem's Bright King
11)    Poor Orphan Child
12)    Lonesome
13)    Lonesome for You, Darling
14)    Please Baby
Product Details
Performer Notes
  • Personnel: Ginny Hawker (vocals, tenor); Ginny Hawker, Tracy Schwarz; Peter Schwarz (tenor, baritone); Kari Sickenberger (tenor); Dirk Powell (mandolin); Ron Stewart (guitar, mandolin, fiddle); Peter Schwarz .
  • Liner Note Author: Dirk Powell.
  • Recording information: Cypress House Studio, St. Martinsville, LA (01/19/2001).
  • Photographers: Ginny Hawker; Dale Hawker Norton.
  • Arrangers: Ralph Stanley; Carter Stanley.
  • Most of Draw Closer was recorded live in Louisiana in a one-room house built in the early 1800s, and that's exactly the feel that predominates here, the unadorned feel of an intimate living room session with a group of dedicated old-timey musicians. Ginny Hawker's no frills tenor is the focus on most tracks, along with husband Tracy Schwarz's well-worn West Virginia mountain drawl, and the playing (Schwarz on guitar, Ron Stewart on mandolin and fiddle, Peter Schwarz on bass, and with producer Dirk Powell adding mandolin on two tracks) is wonderfully minimal and appropriate. The music on Draw Closer comes from an era when the distinct lines between Appalachian ballads, gospel, blues, early honky tonk and bluegrass were not yet fully formed, and the result, while it sounds old and sometimes truly ancient, is oddly modern and refreshing. Among the highlights are the bleak, stark and unnerving "Poor Drunkard's Dream," driven by Stewart's insistent modal fiddle line, and the old Appalachian ballad, "Little Willie," which also draws its muted tension from a modal arrangement. Kari Sickenberger joins Hawker for a wonderfully harmonized duet on Kate Peters Sturgill's "Poor Orphan Child." The album ends with a striking, yet comfortable, version of "Please Baby," originally done by the Mississippi Sheiks, and it perfectly illustrates the junction at which blues and early honky tonk mixed. There is a quiet, patient strength to this album, and its unassuming simplicity gives it the veneer of timelessness. ~ Steve Leggett
Professional Reviews
Dirty Linen (p.44) - "Your spirit will indeed be uplifted when you listen to this brilliant, highly recommended disc."
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