The Stanleytones

Half a Dozen Heartaches

Despite their name, the Stanleytones are more than just a Stanley Brothers tribute band. On a fine debut album, Half a Dozen Heartaches, the Denver-area bluegrass quintet -- guitarist and singer Gary Dark, mandolinist Sam Cohen, banjoist Jim Bertolin, fiddler Mark Weeg and bassist Drew Garrett -- pay homage to Ralph and Carter with a respectful cover version of "Ridin' That Midnight Train," but they also include two Bill Monroe numbers ("Rocky Road Blues," "Blue Moon of Kentucky") and a song associated with Jimmy Martin ("Sophronie"). Throw in some old-time string-band music ("Bound to Ride," "Black Mountain Rag") and some solid originals ("Half a Dozen Heartaches," "Weld County Breakdown," "Tears I Cried for You"), and the result is a highly satisfying collection of traditional, high-lonesome bluegrass. (The Stanleytones perform Saturday, February 22, at Conor O'Neil's in Boulder; see www.stanleytones.com.)
 
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