Here is Scott Miller With a Little Help From His Female Friends

Read our review of Scott Miller’s new CD Ladies Auxiliary

 

By Rob Dickens

 

The Artist

Scott Miller

 

The Album

Ladies Auxiliary

 

The Cover

 

The Release Date

November 3 2017

 

The Label

F.A.Y. Recordings

 

The Introduction

In the 1990s, Scott Miller was a member of the very vibrant Knoxville TN-based outfit the V-Roys.  The band impressed Steve Earle who signed them to his label E-Squared.  Not long after, both label and band were gone.  Having survived a health scare, Miller headed for his family’s Shenandoah Valley ranch and embraced the life of a cattleman.  Between his post V-Roys band, The Commonwealth and his solo outings, he has amassed an impressive ten albums.  Ladies Auxiliary has, however, taken four years to poke its head out.

 

The Background

The album name reflects the female help he received in bringing life to his songs.  Bryn Davies on bass (a regular for Darrell Scott), Rayner Gellert and Deanie Richardson’s fiddle, Anne McCue on guitar and banjaroo, Jen Gunderman piano and Megan Carchman on drums.  Comprising ten songs, there are eight originals (one a co-write with Robin and Linda Williams), a cover of Bill Monroe’s tune ‘With Body and Soul’ (by Virginia Stauffer) and Dave Kinney’s razor-sharp ‘Mother-In-Law’.

 

The Recording

So impressed was Miller by McCue’s playing, he also enlisted her as producer, to great effect.  The songs were recorded at Wild Chorus Studio in Knoxville and Flying Machine, Nashville.

 

The Quote

“I wanted to call this record Thalia and Melpomene after the Greek muses (the smiley/frowny faces of the theatre) but my manager Kathi Whitley said, ‘You call this record THAT and I quit.’”  **

 

The Clip

Here’s a live take of one of the new songs ‘Lo Scientology, Spanishburg, WVA’ at Music City Roots out of Franklin TN.

 

 

The Track List

  1. Epic Love
  2. This River’s Yours/This Valley’s Mine
  3. Jacki With An Eye
  4. Someday/Sometime
  5. Mother-in-Law
  6. Ten Miles Down The Nine Mile Road
  7. Middle Man
  8. Lo Siento, Spanishburg, WVA
  9. With Body and Soul
  10. Get Along, Everybody

 

The Verdict

How can this be??  Scott Miller has been nose-to-the-grindstone honing his considerable skills and putting himself in the spotlight for over a decade and it takes until now for us at Listening Through The Lens to get his gold-standard musical message.  Fortunately producer Anne McCue directed my attention to this album and what a joy it is to behold.

The opener ‘Epic Love’ has everything – a wonderful love story, passionate vocals, bewitching bass and delicate piano.  Embrace the reflective ‘Someday/Sometime’ with its rising chorus, the wry observations of the lilting ‘Ten Miles Down The Nine Mile Road’, the paranoia of ‘Middle Man’ and the humour of ‘Jacki With An Eye’ and ‘Mother-In-Law’.  The fiddles of Gellert and Richardson infuse the album with ethereal qualities, with McCue’s multi-talented guitar and banjaroo chops enhancing everything she has a go at.

We now know about Scott Miller.

We now know that he is an outstanding talent.

We now know that Ladies Auxiliary is a wonderful collection of keen insights, music performances and arrangements.

**PS  Thalia and Melpomene do however rate a dedication on the liner notes

 

Read our review of Scott Miller’s new CD Ladies Auxiliary

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Author: Rob Dickens

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