Flat-out amazing old bluegrass
Joe Sixpack -- Slipcue.com | ...in Middle America | 07/11/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Banjo whiz Don Reno and guitarist Red Smiley were one of the most dynamic and bluegrass acts of the 1950s, singing zippy songs that framed Smiley's dense, deft fingerpicking and Reno's breathtaking banjo work. In the 1940s, Reno just barely missed out on a slot as the plunker in Bill Monroe's Blue Grass boys, so history pegs him as a following in the footsteps of the great Earl Scruggs, although in fact Reno had developed his similarly dazzling banjo style right around the same time as Scruggs had, and was no less amazing. When you hear these classic tracks from the duo's King Records days, Reno's three-finger style will make your jaw drop... This excellent UK import supplants various '70s LPs that covered the same turf, collecting hit songs such as "I'm Using My Bible For A Roadmap" and "I Know You're Married," as well as little instrumental h-bombs like "Crazy Finger Tune" and "Choking The Strings," and the hillbilly classic, "Country Boy Rock'n'Roll." It's all great stuff; if you can find this disc, don't hesitate to snap it up."