Chris Jones and The Night Drivers are back with a double-barrelled release that showcases both the quartet’s straight-ahead bluegrass strength and their unique comic sensibilities. Kyle Cantrell will world premier “Wolf Creek Pass” and “If That Was Love” on Sirius XM’s Bluegrass Junction (Channel 61) tomorrow morning at 8:00am ET. The two tracks will later be available for purchase as a Digital EP on Tuesday, 25th Sep, 2012 via iTunes, Amazon.com and other online music retailers.
A novelty number by C. W. McCall from the mid-1970s about the great mountain pass along the Continental Divide in Colorado, “Wolf Creek Pass” has become a staple of the Night Driver’s live show, with Jones calmly navigating the treacherous recitation of this classic truck-drivin’ song, and The Night Drivers dishing up an extended jam that gives mandolinist/tenor singer Mark Stoffel and banjo man Ned Luberecki plenty of room to stretch out. For their studio recording, the group called on Infamous Stringdusters fiddler Jeremy Garrett to help out with backup, and Sierra Hull and Claire Lynch to provide the female chorus parts that were such a distinctive part of McCall’s original record. The result is part tongue twisting, part pure bluegrass virtuosity, and ALL entertainment.
Also, backing “Wolf Creek Pass” on The Night Drivers’ newest release, “If That Was Love” is an original number penned by Jones and Night Driver bassist Jon Weisberger. A wry take on a love affair that burns bright but only briefly, the song blends the simplicity and drive of traditional bluegrass with a few melodic twists, soulful vocals, and plenty of strong picking delivered by Jones, Luberecki and Stoffel.
A 3-time IBMA award-winning singer/songwriter/guitarist and daily program host on Sirius XM’s Bluegrass Junction, Chris Jones formed The Night Drivers in the mid 1990s. He has led the band through a set of stellar recordings and tours while appearing and recording with some of the world’s most respected musicians including The Chieftains, Earl Scruggs, Vassar Clements and Tom T. Hall. He is also a freelance writer and columnist for Bluegrass Today.com