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This is my collection of personel recorded mp3s that I occationaly get in to my head to post online. If you see any thing you like please feel free to comment on it.
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The Darkest Hour Is Just Before Dawn

Posted 06-05-2014 at 11:28 PM by Bishop

written by Ralph Stanley
recorded by Emmylou Harris and Ricky Skaggs

Why do I like the, slow, soft songs so much? For a long, long, time now the pattern in country music has been to play faster tunes that sound more intricate and complicated. Most people seem to think that the faster you can play the hard parts, the better the instrumentalist you must be. Iím not sure if that is exactly true. In many cases it is easier to cover up your mistakes amongst a flurry a musical notes. Even the experienced players sometimes get caught up in this need for speed. But music isnít a race track where the winner is determined by who finishes first. Itís about relaying a story or a message and having the listener understand what you said and how you meant it. Itís as much about the feelings as it is about the words. When you have your foot to the floor there is little time to inject that feeling into the song, much less, expect that the listener to appreciate it.

I have never deigned that Iím an old school musician. I believe in the story with in the song. For me, if you canít get that right, there is no point even singing the song. Every instrumental, every pause for effect, is inserted into my music to slow the song down and give the listener time to contemplate the meaning of the words and the mood of the tune. Iím not a fancy musician. Iím a very basic guitarist. I keep my picking simple and basic but I try to touch the strings of the listenerís heart. As Hank said ĎHave you paid your dues, can you moan the blues and can you bend them guitar strings?í Folks this isnít the Daytona Speedway. Itís not who finishes first but who can get inside the hearts and souls of music fans who win the loyalty of country music listeners. Maybe its time we moved a little ways back towards slower, more emotional music.

O.K. Its time I got down off my soap box and introduced this tune. Written by one of the great legends of bluegrass, Ralph Stanley, ĎThe Darkest Hour Is Just Before Dawní is a beautiful old inspirational, gospel, song. It is a perfect example of a soft, slow piece that loses nothing of intricacies in it meandering pace. When performed by artists that take the time to fill out the song with the emotion it demands, it almost can not be beat in its genera. Emmylou Harris and Ricky Skaggs are just a couple of famous artists that have been unable to resist covering this great song. Listen to my cover of ĎThe Darkest Hour Is Just Before Dawní and maybe youíll see what I mean when I say that slow, soft spoken music just can not be beat.
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