Excerpts from the review of "Song My Heart Sings" by Paul Della Valle which appeared in the October 2002 edition of the Mother Town Monthly Magazine
"Slo-Grass' new CD worth the wait ... just you wait and see"
By Paul Della Valle
Slo-Grass, one of Central Massachusetts' favorite acoustic bands, held a release party for their long-awaited second CD on Oct. 23 at the Green Rooster Coffeehouse in Worcester.
The new 13-song CD, like the first album and their live shows, showcases Slo-Grass's varied musical tastes. In addition to their originals, The Song My Heart Sings includes a sweet instrumental version of the jazz standard "Don't Get Around Much Anymore," a tender cover of Buddy Holly's classic "Raining in My Heart," and a real high and lonesome treatment of bluegrass founder Bill Monroe's "Summertime is Past and Gone." And bass player Bob Dick's original "Satan's Reel" could be destined to become one of those hot-picking fiddle tunes played every July around campsites at the Winterhawk Bluegrass Festival.
Bluegrass, of course, is the word most used to describe Slo-Grass, but the band offers much more. "We like to throw the word Americana in there," said mandolin player Fran McConville. "It's pure acoustic. It's eclectic, everything from Duke Ellington to Bill Monroe to Bob Dylan's' 'All Along the Watchtower.' I don't think there's any kind of music that doesn't lend itself to an acoustic arrangement. We try to play something for everyone...."
Two of the songs on The Song My Heart Sings, including the title tune, were written by Rick Lang of New Hampshire, a well-known songwriter and long-time friend of Dick's. McConville wrote four of the songs, including the down-home "Durham" and the stunning a cappella gospel tune "Believe in Me," co-written with his friend, Winchendon musician Dave O'Mara. On that song, Slo-Grass gets to showcase their powerful four-part harmonies.
"What I like about the band is it is a low-pressure situation," McConville said. "No one is in charge. We all bring the songs in from all over, or write them, and we all feel like equals in the band. We all kind of feed off each other." No cannibal jokes please.