Bluegrass godfather Del McCoury and his band performed at the
Ark on Friday night, delivering a sweet set of timeless American
music to an almost rowdy crowd of bluegrass fanatics. Dressed in
immaculately clean suits and huddled around two studio-style
microphones, the musicians were purely classy, barreling through
numerous audience requests and tracks off their new studio album
It’s Just the Night.

The 64-year-old Del was smiling all night, his eyes with raised
brows squinting back at the middle-aged capacity crowd in one of
the nation’s premier acoustic music venues. Equally priceless was
the euphoric look on the faces of those whose requests were granted
for songs like “Lonesome Wind” and “Snake in the House.”

The band was perfectly tight, Del’s “high lonesome” tenor
harmonizing with his band mates, including sons Ronnie (Mandolin)
and Robbie (Banjo). Fiddler Jason Carter created a sound as rich as
an entire string section while Mike Bub held down bluegrass’
signature bouncy bass lines. This was an incredibly fun show, the
enthusiasm of both band and audience infecting everyone in the
house.

Opening the show was Ann Arbor’s own bluegrass legends the RFD
Boys, who have been performing around town since 1969. Picking
their way through a short set of originals and classic covers like
“Banks of the Ohio” and “Dead Skunk,” their humorous, if cheesy,
in-between song banter complimented their easy-going sound
perfectly.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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