The Old 78’s featuring Clarke Buehling, Curly Miller and Carole Anne Rose (www.theold78s.com and www.theskirtlifters.com)
Clarke, Curly and Carole Anne began a collaboration several years ago, featuring their Ragtime, Hillbilly fiddle band, and Classic Banjo orchestra pieces. Clarke, who originally introduced the duo to great Old Time music and Classic Banjo, is internationally acclaimed for his playing of the complex Classic and stroke-style banjo and has performed at Carnegie Hall! Curly and Carole Anne are nationally known for their rowdy fiddle band tunes and also for their Classic Banjo repertoire. Together, they have performed at highly regarded festivals such as Merlefest, Wheatland, Winfield, The Ozark Folk Center, The North American Folk Alliance, and numerous other venues like Ashokan, Swannanoa, and banjo and fiddle camps all over the country.
The tunes on this CD combine rare tunes with rare instruments and the unique talents of these three musicians. Curly is widely known for his authentic renditions of the obscure flatted key Rags. Carole Anne plays a customized 6-string (5-string style) 12 ½” 1893 Stewart Banjeaurine in her own clawhammer style that, together with Curly’s fiddling, captures the sound and driving force of the great Hillbilly bands of the 1920-30’s featuring the Rags of the South Central US. Clarke and Curly both play Classic Banjo Solos and back each other up on Clarke’s rare 16” Stewart Cello banjo, and with Carole Anne’s Seconds, form an authentic Classic Banjo Orchestra. Many of these pieces come from Clarke’s vast music collection dating from the 1830’s up through the Ragtime era. Clarke, also a master of Stroke-style banjo, includes several rare Minstrel Era tunes from the Civil War period. The past four years of their musical interactions have yielded their first CD together and the first CD under “The Old 78’s” name, which was also recorded in their own studio!
With Darren Novotony’s expert help, Curly and Carole Anne purchased the equipment to assemble a high quality home recording studio based on state-of-the-art Royer ribbon mics. The intent was to capture the acoustic string sound as close to live as possible and to avoid digital enhancement. They have recorded three projects for other musicians, (two for Shout Lulu www.shoutlulu.com and one for David Scrivner) which have received high marks on their sound quality. As the recording engineer, Curly was able to develop The Old 78’s sound on this latest project. They have several videos available on their website where you can find out more info about their music, CDs and performance schedules (www.theold78s.com and www.theskirtlifters.com).
Gold Tone Musical Instruments (www.goldtone.com) is making new models of two of the unusual instruments that you hear on this CD, a 5-string Cello Banjo and a 6-string 5-string-style banjo. They are also making a 4-string Cello Banjo. All three instruments are now available in limited quantities.