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Sunday October 26, 2014
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The Gibson Brothers

 

continued

Most of the songs are written by one brother or the other. The Gibsons also have written a few songs with Dick Decasse, owner of Dick's Country Store and Music Oasis in Churubusco, New York. (This is grassroots music indeed, and the Gibson Brothers have probably played in front of enough tough barroom crowds that they can deliver a good time to just about anybody.) One of those shares its theme — the suspicious man confronting his girlfriend — with hundreds of other bluegrass songs. But rarely outside the songs of Carter Stanley have the lover's words cut so deep:

What you got to say?
Oh, what have you to fear?
Have you been untrue to me?
Whisper in my ear.


And they do a few songs that sound traditional but don't have any models in the tradition at all. "Ragged Man" is an acid-etched portrait of two brothers, one successful, the other a street person who says, "I see you in the papers that blow across the street. I burn 'em in the old trash can — but they don't warm me none; nobody loves the ragged man."

So show up, if you wish, for the fine harmony that only brothers or sisters can sing. Show up for some splendid bluegrass playing. But if you're on the lookout for well-made songs, don't miss the Gibson Brothers under any circumstances.    (end of article)

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