Renowned fiddler Betse Ellis, a founding member of "hillbilly riot" band The Wilders, is sure to impress you with her musical versatility on her debut solo album, "Don't You Want to Go." Her unique approach to American traditional music is presented in a host of different musical styles, ranging from impressive tributes to Ozark elders in fiddle tunes and song (Bear Creek Sally Goodin'), electrifying vocals on blues standards (Looking the World Over), original high-energy old-time fiddle tunes (Run!), and epic, lushly orchestrated original songs with string sections arranged and performed by Betse herself (Another Night Gone, Don't You Want to Go). In the move from band member to band leader, Betse confirms that she is indeed one of the most multitalented musicians on the old-time & alt.country music scenes.
The album was recorded almost exclusively live, with exceptions when physically impossible (Betse recorded string quartet parts on two songs). Several tracks on the album are performed with solo fiddle. A couple of them ("John Henry", "Heaven Bells...") feature singing with solo fiddle accompaniment. The fiddle tunes are accompanied on guitar by David Regnier (The Afterparty) or Jeff Clayton Brown (former bass player for The Wilders). One original fiddle waltz is accompanied on piano and guitar by Jeff Stolz and Wallace Cochran (Drakkar Sauna). Country blues songs and original Americana songs are accompanied by Betse's bandmates in another project, Dangerhand: Mark Smeltzer, David Regnier, and Amy Farrand. Wilders lead singer, Ike Sheldon, joins Betse on piano, performing a 19th century art piece, "La Cinquantaine".
"Don't You Want to Go?" was released April 21, 2009, on Free Dirt Records.