Red Pepper Records is pleased to present "LETTER FROM APPALACHIA", the third full length release from Appalachian Reggae musician RAS ALAN. This 53 minute disc reflects the artists' musical connection to both Appalachia and Jamaica. Celebrating the 21st century, this foundation of stellar musicianship is topped with plenty of production audio values. From the life of an Appalachian man, the 14 true songs written in the hollers and on the ridges are graced by the Rasta rhythm of bass and drums, the spirit of upful livin' and are full of American country get up and go!
"LETTER FROM APPALACHIA" opens with the one-drop-two-steppin, guitar showcasin COUNTRY REBEL. SO MUCH BETTA encourages us to turn off the TV and turn on our Life. Played on a hand-built guitar, the all instrumental RASTAFARI RIDGE could be an ancient Reggae fiddle tune while LIVIN IN THE APPALACHIANS is a piano spiced Appalachian revival all by itself! The job site call and response of WORKIN ON A BUILDIN puts up the foundation while OBSERVATION is a study of the machinations of society. DREADNECK kicks up the dust Carter family style and live performance chestnut CYAN'T CAGE A LION enjoys its first commercial studio release. GATEKEEPER reminds us of our own possibilities, the mandolin riff and the voice effects echoing the message that brings it all home.
RAS ALAN is joined by Lion veterans ROBERT 'BROTHER BOB' FRANKLIN with his inspiring harmonies and steady bass, JEREMY 'best shoes in the Reggae business' CORN on accordion,organ,and piano putting the spirit in every note and J.P. DELANOYE on the harmonica and his own smooth sounding "Deltamatic" lap steel. Sharing Burke County,NC origins with Ras Alan, BOBBY "BP" PEARSON keeps us dancing on the drums, celebrating life and music every beat of the way. RAS ALAN rounds up the vibe with vocals, bass, Djun-Djun, ashiko, harmonica, saw, organ, resophonic and electric guitar, a buddy's hand made mandolin and a small body acoustic guitar that Ras Alan built himself.
Beginning with his first "touring" show as a guitarist and singer at a rural Baptist church in 1975, RAS ALAN has shared stages, festivals and performances in Jamaica and the US with The Wailers, Burning Spear, Ralph Stanley, Ziggy Marley and The Melody Makers, David Grisman, Ali Farke Toure, John Prine, Black Uhuru, Dougie McClean, Acoustic Syndicate, The Meditations, Salif Keita, Gillian Welch and David Rawlings, Sam Bush, Babetunde Olatunje, Laura Love, Austin Lounge Lizards, Awareness Art Ensemble, Peter Rowan, the North Mississippi All Stars, Reeltime Travelers, Mali Ensemble Instrumental, Snake Oil Medicine Show, Lucky Dube, Larry and Jenny Keel, Junior Brown, Sista Carol, Carl Densen's Tiny Universe, Leftover Salmon, Jean Ritchie and Hazel Dickens, AVAS, Derek Trucks, the Itals, Gretchen Wilson, Southern Culture on the Skids, Old Crow Medicine Show, Yonder Mountain String Band and many, many others.
RAS ALAN'S successful performances at the Smithsonian Folklife Festival in Washington, DC and the first-round entry for a Grammy nomination have him set on a breakout trajectory. Reggae Grammy® committee chair ROGER STEFFENS exclaims, "Reggabilly at its best!"
Ras Alan's three APPALACHIAN REGGAE albums were selected by the SMITHSONIAN's Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage to represent new Appalachian music and culture. Ras Alan's music is housed in the Smithsonian's permanent collections at the Smithsonian Archives in Washington, D.C. and the Archives of Appalachia at ETSU in Johnson City, TN.
Ras Alan's albums also available on cdBaby.com are NATIVE and FOLKLIFE- Live at the Smithsonian Folklife Festival.
RAS ALAN is available for concert performances, workshops, recordings, interviews and appearences through Red Pepper Records appalachianreggae.com PO Box 33, Greeneville, TN 37744 USA
RED PEPPER RECORDS The roots of American reggae