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Thread: Sierra Hull on Steven Colbert

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    Default Sierra Hull on Steven Colbert

    This week, Steven Colbert (A Tonight Show) had Sturgill Simpson as his musical guest. He has a new album of bluegrass versions of his songs. I wasn't very impressed with Sturgill, but his band was impressive. It included Sierra Hull on mandolin, Stuart Duncan on fiddle, and Tim O'Brien on guitar, among others.

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    Registered User Gibcaster000's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sierra Hull on Steven Colbert

    Thanks for the heads up! I hadn't seen this yet.

    I've been really enjoying this album, and you are right that the band is really great. Sierra Hull's mandolin playing is wonderful (as to be expected), and I love that Tim O’Brien and Mark Howard both play guitar on it. Sierra's got a great mandolin break (as well as harmony vocals) on "Life of Sin."

    As far as Sturgill himself, I think he really shines on guitar when he is singing and accompanying himself solo. He's a good rhythm player (not that you can here it over the drums on the Late Show mix), and a great electric player, but his playing on something like his NPR Tiny Desk Concert has always really stood out to me. He also got hit hard by a nasty case of COVID back in the spring. His vocals sound great on the studio recordings, but this was the first live performance I've seen. It has occurred to me that a serious respiratory illness like that can't do a singer any favors.

    For anyone interested, the whole album can be heard free on Sturgill's YouTube channel:
    https://www.youtube.com/playlist?lis...NQQ_LDiBFCu4IY
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    Default Re: Sierra Hull on Steven Colbert

    Nice shirt, Tim.


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    Default Re: Sierra Hull on Steven Colbert

    Quote Originally Posted by David L View Post
    This week, Steven Colbert (A Tonight Show) had Sturgill Simpson as his musical guest. He has a new album of bluegrass versions of his songs. I wasn't very impressed with Sturgill, but his band was impressive. It included Sierra Hull on mandolin, Stuart Duncan on fiddle, and Tim O'Brien on guitar, among others.
    I thought it was good. It sounded like Kings of Leon goes bluegrass

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    Default Re: Sierra Hull on Steven Colbert

    Thanks for sharing this! I really liked it

    And yes, nice shirt Tim 😂

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    Default Re: Sierra Hull on Steven Colbert

    Quote Originally Posted by David L View Post
    I wasn't very impressed with Sturgill, but his band was impressive.
    Ditto.
    "I play BG so that's what I can talk intelligently about." A line I loved and pirated from Mandoplumb

  11. #7

    Default Re: Sierra Hull on Steven Colbert

    I feel like someone who knows what superheroes look like in their disguises.

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    Default Re: Sierra Hull on Steven Colbert

    Talk about a good backup band!
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    Registered User foldedpath's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sierra Hull on Steven Colbert

    A mumblemouth singer who is lucky enough to catch the current spotlight, backed up by an Ace studio band. 'Twas ever thus.

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    Default Re: Sierra Hull on Steven Colbert

    Not sure what constitutes the "current spotlight", as Sturgill has been making waves for the last 7-8 years on the edges of country music. He's part of a push against mainstream country, and I, for one, am a fan of his music and his ethos. This new album is basically a greatest hits album covering his last 4-5 albums, all of which are fantastic, each with it's own stylistic approach. Making a bluegrass album was an homage to his grandfather and his Kentucky roots, and he's been very humble about and respectful of the talented musicians that recorded the album with him. Speaking of which, no one mentioned Scott Vestal who played banjo on the album and this performance video.

    I think it's unnecessary to knock others down because it isn't your particular cup of tea, but this is the internet so I guess it's par for the course. If nothing else, he's drawing a much larger audience and paycheck to bluegrass musicians who have likely been without much income this year.

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    Default Re: Sierra Hull on Steven Colbert

    Quote Originally Posted by foldedpath View Post
    A mumblemouth singer who is lucky enough to catch the current spotlight, backed up by an Ace studio band. 'Twas ever thus.
    Country music is his thing and he's better than most IMO. Good songwriter too.
    Check out his High Top Mountain CD. This is my favorite bluegrass tune by a country star,
    though Dolly had a few good bluegrass songs too.


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    Default Re: Sierra Hull on Steven Colbert

    Anybody in that band could be a headliner (or maybe the headliner) in any other setting. Such a lot of talent on that stage. Lifetime masters like Stuart, Scott and Tim as well as Sierra, one of the brightest of the current generation. Wow.

    Enjoy!
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    Default Re: Sierra Hull on Steven Colbert

    That was cool... and shot at the Station Inn no less!... played in the Jam there once, cool stuff!
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    Default Re: Sierra Hull on Steven Colbert

    Is it me, or is Tim starting to look a lot like Norman Blake?

    Thanks for the video. Enjoyed it greatly.
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    Default Re: Sierra Hull on Steven Colbert

    Very unsual/unorthodox vocal style, but wow, what a band he put together (Sierra's playing is flawless, as always)! I also like his old Martin a lot.
    ...

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    Default Re: Sierra Hull on Steven Colbert

    I hope he's awed.

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    Default Re: Sierra Hull on Steven Colbert

    I really like the Sturgill Cut Grass Album. So much so i ended up getting his album A Sailors View of Earth. Everyone has their opinions, for me it was a nice discovery.
    Go Vandals!

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    Default Re: Sierra Hull on Steven Colbert

    Quote Originally Posted by foldedpath View Post
    A mumblemouth singer who is lucky enough to catch the current spotlight, backed up by an Ace studio band. 'Twas ever thus.
    It would appear that Sierra Hull, Stuart Duncan, Tim O'Brien, Scott Vestal, and Mark Howard, among others, do not share your disdain for Mr. Simpson.

    What do they know?

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  29. #19

    Default Re: Sierra Hull on Steven Colbert

    Quote Originally Posted by ccravens View Post
    It would appear that Sierra Hull, Stuart Duncan, Tim O'Brien, Scott Vestal, and Mark Howard, among others, do not share your disdain for Mr. Simpson.

    What do they know?

    To be fair, it's a job. I'm not sure that that is and of itself enough of a proof that his musicianship is to be admired.

    I didn't really enjoy the video of the performance myself. I also thought that Hull's vocal style didn't really complement Simpson's here.
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    Default Re: Sierra Hull on Steven Colbert

    Thank you so much for posting this!! Reading all the... shall we say... 'mixed reviews' about Sturgill's music I can't help but think about Jerry Garcia's great line about the Grateful Dead:
    "We're like licorice. Not everybody likes licorice, but the people who like licorice really like licorice.”

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    Default Re: Sierra Hull on Steven Colbert

    Country singers from Molly O'Day to Tom T. Hall, Dolly Parton, Emmylou Harris, Dan Fogelberg, etc., etc. have made albums with bluegrass instrumentation. Anyone remember Skeeter Davis's I Love Flatt & Scruggs? Conversely, bluegrass stars have invited country artists to join them on album projects, Monroe (Bill Monroe & Friends), Stanley (Ralph Stanley & Friends: Man of Constant Sorrow), perhaps others.

    Some successful, some less so. Bluegrass is, after all, a sub-genre of country music as it's most broadly defined. If Sturgill Simpson wanted to explore how his songs sounded as bluegrass, at least he picked a pretty stellar exploration party.
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    Default Re: Sierra Hull on Steven Colbert

    Quote Originally Posted by foldedpath View Post
    A mumblemouth singer who is lucky enough to catch the current spotlight, backed up by an Ace studio band. 'Twas ever thus.

    Man ain't that the truth . Who will be next to ' go bluegrass ' ....Justin Bieber..?
    I'm afraid SS can't sing this stuff . No matter how good your band is , this music is about lyric and vocals .

  34. #23

    Default Re: Sierra Hull on Steven Colbert

    Quote Originally Posted by roysboy View Post
    Man ain't that the truth . Who will be next to ' go bluegrass ' ....Justin Bieber..?
    I'm afraid SS can't sing this stuff . No matter how good your band is , this music is about lyric and vocals .
    Is this sarcasm? I really can't tell. Sturgill can't sing his own songs?

    I'd take this over mainstream country all day long.

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    Default Re: Sierra Hull on Steven Colbert

    Nothing makes bluegrass succeed more in the mainstream more than a popular non-bluegrass musician that records a bluegrass project.

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    Default Re: Sierra Hull on Steven Colbert

    Quote Originally Posted by Mandolin Cafe View Post
    Nothing makes bluegrass succeed more in the mainstream more than a popular non-bluegrass musician that records a bluegrass project.
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