Much of the music I was exposed to as a child were classic country artists like Conway Twitty, George Jones and Randy Travis. My dad also exposed me to bluegrass artists such as Ralph Stanley. Over the years, both genres have evolved a lot leaving artists to walk a line between honoring the old and embracing the new.
One bluegrass artist who has been able to do that masterfully is Alan Barnosky, who will be releasing his Lonesome Road EP on Jan. 17. This new music excites me and I think it’s something my dad would enjoyed as well if he were still alive.
Barnosky is from Durham, North Carolina and his debut release called Old Freight was in the Top 10 on the Folk charts. He has since become a regular at festivals including the 2018 IBMA Songwriter Showcase and he received an honorable mention at the Telluride Troubadour Contest.
The first song to be released from the new album is called “Might Be A Call” and it was inspired by that music of Bill Monroe. “A lot of Bill Monroe’s songs have themes of loss,” Barnosky said in a release. “I was listening heavily to Monroe when I wrote ‘Might Be a Call’. It is about somebody who’s gone but you still feel their presence, and there’s a palpable uncertainty there.”
The title track is another great song. It was inspired by a two-month solo bicycle tour. He said in the release that the song tells the story of the life of a modern hobo making his way down the road to see what the next moment brings. It is not the only track on Lonesome Road which was inspired by Barnosky’s love for the outdoors and nature.
Barnosky has grown into a bluegrass star. His new release showcases his superb songwriting and musicianship.