30 years ago the David Grisman Quintet's first album revolutionized the world of acoustic string music. This latest release - Dawg's Groove continues the enduring legacy of that historic album with all new material and a new incarnation of one of the most influential and musically innovative bands in America today.
This new chapter in DGQ history once again showcases the extraordinary musicianship and creative arranging/composing skills of David Grisman and his band members. The program of new originals begins with Dawg's latest - "Limestones," a powerful blend of traditional and modern jazz which segues into "La Grande Guignole" ‚ an enchanting "tribute to an obscure passion for French melodrama." Next is "Ella McDonnell," bassist Jim Kerwin's excitingly elegant Celtic tribute to his Irish grandmother, followed by drummer George Marsh's moving remembrance of his beloved daughter, "Waltz for Lucy." Enrique Coria's passionate guitar shines on "Zambola," a playful Dawg samba and "Tracy's Tune," a bossa portrait of a very special person ‚ Tracy Bigelow who penned the "hip" title track ‚ "Dawg's Groove." Matt Eakle kicks some serious Latin butt as a flutist and composer with "My Friend Dawg" followed by "Blues for Vassar," David's homage to his dear friend and colleague, the late Vassar Clements.
These ten masterful quintet performances were recorded live to 2-track analog by "Decibel Dave" Dennison.
ReviewsDawg's Groove doesn't seem so new anymore, not after New Grass Revival, BÃ©la Fleck & the Flecktones and Nickel Creek. But it still manages to sound fresh, or better yet, timeless. The quintet continues to conquer new lands and eras; "La Grande Guignole" recalls early 20th century France, while "Ella McDonnell" takes on Celtic themes. The album closes with "Blues for Vassar," a lengthy, melancholy remembrance of Grisman cohort, the late fiddler Vassar Clements. The playing is magnificent and the recording quality exceptional, a reflection of Grisman's high standards. - Stewart Oksenhorn