Image © Rounder Records Group 2008
(19 November 2008) Our first review of 21 Grammy award winning country singer Alison Krauss is of her new DVD, A Hundred Miles or More: Live From The Tracking Room (Rounder Records (USA) 11661-0625-9, 2008). Alison has one of the purest and most original voices in American Music, performing songs from her critically acclaimed solo album A Hundred Miles or More: A Collection with members of her highly regarded band Union Station and special guest musicians. It also features memorable duets with Brad Paisley, James Taylor, John Waite and a cover of "Sawing on the Strings" with Tony Rice, Sam Bush and Stuart Duncan joining Union Station.
For Alison Krauss, musical collaboration has been a way of life. Her own story has been nothing short of amazing. She was signed to Rounder Records as a 13-year old fiddler from Champaign, Illinois, she has over two decades with the label, become the most recognized face in contemporary bluegrass, a critically acclaimed artist who has brought modern sophistication to the genre while respecting its traditions, and stretched beyond bluegrass to accompany pop, country and rock & roll. She has sold upwards of 10 million records while garnering her numerous Grammy awards, the most of any female artist in Grammy history.
Originally taped as a GAC television special, this DVD is set in a recording studio enviornment to re-create the making of many of the tracks from A Hundred Miles or More: A Collection. The DVD offers an intimate look at how Alison works in the studio enviornment. Featured is the single "Simple Love," written by Sarah Siskind. Guest musicians Gordon Mote (piano) and Abraham Laboriel Sr (bass) join Krauss for this very special performance. Also included are a soluful slow-dance tempo duet of "Lay Down Beside Me" with John Waite, a reprise of "How's The World Treaing You" with James Taylor, and the newly recorded, previously unrelesaed, "Shawods, featuring Tony Rice on guitar.
A Hundred Miles or More: A Collection (the CD) gathered on one elegandly understated disc several previously released collaborations with such artists and friends as Paisley, Waite, Taylor, Natalie MacMaster and The Chieftains, along with songs she cut for the films Cold Mountain, O Brother, Where Art Thou? and an inspired by album for the animated The Prince Of Egypt. Alison also recorded and produced four new tracks for the album including "Simple Love" and "Jacob's Dream." With sixteen songs A Hundred Miles of More: A Collection follows her previous compilation Now That I've Found You: A Collection.
The DVD mixes live performances with interviews. The interviews can be 'turned off' in the DVD configuration making for continuous live performances. Alison's crystalline voice carries the day although her violin playing is equally outstanding. There are ten tracks on the DVD, which with interviews spans an hour playing time.
The sleeve is a one pager but the DVD is nothing short of superb. An excellent introduction to this fantastic musician or a collector's item for the long time fan.