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WHAT OTHERS SAY:
"Bluegrass needs Travers Chandler. As seemingly more of the music devolves into a formula, Travers is the bitters in the beer, the rhubarb in the strawberry pie, the element of counterpoint that draws forth the desperate emotion that begs to be released from the form. He's not the first -- greats like Carter Stanley, Charlie Moore, and Buzz Busby were there before him -- but Travers is for our time. Savor his music." JIM BEAVER - WHUS BLUEGRASS CAFE
Travers Chandler has a passion for his music. No surprise. He's not the first nor the last. But.... he has given everything he's ever had for his music. Time away from his kids that he loves deeply, lost his love, his home, his van, and most of his worldly possessions but..... he still has his music. Like the record you're about to buy, it all ends good. Happy endings are what keeps the world turning. Love, lust, passion for life, and the inescapable desire to reach the point of burning fire within you... the fire that is your drive to survive. From new love to old love, from old bandmates to new, listen and feel the heartbreak and emotion of a man some say is mad, some say is a genius. But one thing they all agree on is the respect the man and his music deserve.-CDBABY
May 2011 Review of "State of Depression" In Bluegrass Unlimited Magazine
Travis Chandler And Avery County – State Of Depression
TRAVERS CHANDLER AND AVERY COUNTY
STATE OF DEPRESSION
To Read the Full Review, CLICK HERE
Excerpts from the Review:
"To this material, Chandler brings a flexible lead voice somewhat reminiscent of Dudley Connell and brings a direct and unadulterated mandolin style full of blue notes and equal parts terse phrasing and tremelo passages. "
"The recording opens with “Black Dust Fever,” a gem of a slow-to-medium 3/4 lament by Marvin Davis that sympathetically depicts the dilemma of coal miners (or anyone faced with limited options). Ultimately, you do what you have to do. In this case, the man works out his life in the mine, but, to his satisfaction, realizes his family could eat.
That sets the mood and underscores the album’s theme. These are hard-living songs, portraying tough situations. You can picture southern migrants listening to them. In bluegrass today words like progressive, jam, traditional and old time get tossed about like losing tickets at Pimlico. My favorite phrase in bluegrass is, “Real deal.” In my book these are bands that are playing hard hitting and high lonesome bluegrass with heart and truth pouring from each and every note. There are very few real deal bluegrass bands out there today and one of the best is Travers Chandler and Avery County out of Western North Carolina."
Host of the Sweet By and By Bluegrass Show on KDUR radio in Durango, Colorado
Vice-president of the Durango Bluegrass Meltdown Festival
“I feel Travers Chandler is one of the last of the old timey traditional mandolin players, and definitely one of less than a handful in his generation. He FEELS the music within him. He seems to really live for great material too. Travers has gone from being a student of the music to a first rate interpreter. This is pure honky tonk from Baltimore; the music I grew up playing and Travers Chandler and Avery County have mastered".
Danny Paisley and the Southern Grass
We get a lot of albums sent to us by artists and we listen to every one of them, but Avery County's "State Of Depression" has stayed in the CD player for the last month. Travers Chandler has focused on the style of bluegrass music that developed in cities like Baltimore, Dayton, and Detroit when rural people were forced to the city to find employment. The project was influenced by people like Charlie Moore, Buzz Busby, Red Allen, Frank Wakefield, Bill Napier, and others whose music came from the darker side of life. It's about feeling good about feeling bad. This album would make a great stocking stuffer for any moldy fig that can handle a little more depression during the holidays. They can be had by visiting www.averycountyband.com . The liner notes alone are worth the price of the CD! The Miller High Life, Jameson Irish Whiskey, and Camel non filter cigarettes need to be purchased separately.
PS- I liked the album so well that I booked the band for Pickin' In The Pasture next August!
Andy Alexander- Promoter Pickin in the Pasture Lodi New York
"Just got the CD out of the tray and it was smokin' This is pickin'. This is bluegrass. This is going on the air! Congratulations on a fine CD. We'll be glad to put you on the air as often as we can. "
Brian McNeal Prescription Bluegrass Radio
*Review featured in October 2010 edition of Power Pickin' , the publication for all things Colorado Bluegrass, of our album State of Depression*
TRAVERS CHANDLER and AVERY COUNTY
STATE OF DEPRESSION
Patuxent Records, 2010
by Sara Needham
Avery County’s State of Depression does right by an often-ignored niche in the genre, “Baltimore Barroom Bluegrass.” Telling the stories of Appalachian workers lured to the city by opportunity in the 1950’s and 60’s, the project is covered in coal dust and delightfully lonesome, echoing themes of barroom temptation, big-city loneliness and unmet expectations.
Having put in time as sidemen with The James King Band, Danny Paisley and The Southern Grass and The Country Gentlemen, these boys learned their chops from the roots up, and it shows. The instrumental interplay is somewhat reminiscent of the Johnson Mountain Boys, each member lending tasteful support to the overall sound.
As David Smith, of Durango’s KDUR said on his first listen to the new disc, “When an album starts out with a song about a miner dying of black lung disease, then one where your sister shames the family by being a whore you know it’s going to be a great album.” The group has a knack for song selection, unearthing a number of gems on the release. “Too Deep in Heartaches,” a song plucked from the repertoire of the Bowes Brothers, (a little-known 1950’s and 60’s North Carolina bluegrass band) is a perfect example.
The title track, Vernon Oxford’s “State of Depression”, and Hank Williams, Jr’s “Stoned at the Jukebox” boast the heartfelt vocals of Travers Chandler, a seasoned mandolinist with work for Karl Shifflett and Danny Paisley on his bluegrass resume. Chandler’s playing leans heavily toward old-school sound and is featured in Dewey Farmer’s cross-tuned mandolin instrumental, “Lonesome Smokey.” The five-string breaks and back-up work of Adam Poindexter (long-time James King sideman) offer wonderful texture and drive throughout the album. Poindexter also teams Blake Johnson (bassist, now of the Hagar’s Mountain Boys) to contribute the sort of strong harmony vocals the genre is known for. The classic “Have You Come to Say Goodbye My Darlin’?” and an old-time standard in overdrive, “Let Me Fall” (which the band was quick to tell me was recorded before Adam Steffey’s version) round out the album with tasty Jimmy Martin style guitar runs to boot.
Avery County’s hard-edged, mid-century sound sets them apart from their slicker contemporaries and is likely to garner well-deserved attention in the bluegrass world. Whether you’re the type pull up a barstool or a rocking chair, State of Depression is worthy of a serious listen. Patuxent has yet to set a release date, but be on te musicians in Avery County approach this music with obvious reverence for its founders this is nostalgia band, they bring the table, or in this case, the bar plenty of credentials and fresh ideas of their own. There is nothing timid in their attack, nothing timid in their singing, nothing maudlin or overly sentimental in their song selection or dehe lookout for the disc in the next few months at www.averycountyband.com
"Although thlivery. They play their instruments aggressively. The vocals are laced with whiskey and smoke recalling another of the band members influences, Red Allen, and their songs are heavy with despair.
The brilliance of those Baltimore bluegrass heroes burned brightly, but not long enough, leaving fewer recordings than one would hope and leaving many of never having had the chance to see them perform live. Avery County picks up where the earlier generation left off bringing that passionate edgy hardcore style of bluegrass music- wicked, seductive and addictive. Full of sin and pain and desperation and despair to a new decade in which it is sorely missing and much needed."
- Tina Aridas
Mountain Redbird Music, Brooklyn, NY
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