Bret Hertholf — better known around Denver as Halden Wofford — is the author of The Long Gone Lonesome History of Country Music, a book that teaches children about the development of the genre Wofford has devoted much of his life to. But it'd be a big mistake to think that Wofford's approach to his own music is in any way academic. Sinners & Saints, his third album as the leader of the Hi-Beams, is another witty, jubilant celebration of honky-tonk, country and all points in between. The accomplishment here isn't in rehashing the past, but in making tradition sound so fresh. From the wistful, haunting twang of "Invocation" to the swingin' instrumental "Hey Bub," these seventeen songs showcase Wofford and his crew at their best: energetic, authentic and spreading the gospel of Americana by shining example.
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