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MP3 Oliver Buck - Rust Belt Blues

From country-rock barnburners to Twenties-style country-blues, Oliver Buck draws deeply from the well of the great American country, blues, and folk traditions.

10 MP3 Songs
COUNTRY: Americana, BLUES: Country Blues

Singer-songwriter Oliver Buck proudly wears his influences of his sleeve. Part road-dog and part music historian, Buck draws deeply from the well of American popular music from nineteenth century ballads, to Hank Williams and Johnny Cash, to Bob Dylan and The Band. On his recordings and in live performances, he enthusiastically mixes the old with the new--from barnburning originals like his "Troubadour Life," to plaintive classics such as "You Win Again," to his arrangement of the Civil War song "I''ve Been All Around This World"--as if tracing back the common thread that links the country and alt-country music of today to its earliest sources.

Buck, who has a Master''s degree in American history, is particularly fond of the 1920s-50s era when, he says, "country, blues, folk, and rock & roll were all mixed up together. Sure, the marketers and radio programmers tried to separate artists into genres. But for the most part, musicians and songwriters hadn''t gotten the message yet. You listen to those old Memphis and Nashville records and there it is--all kinds of sounds and approaches to playing intermingling together. That''s what makes those Sun Records sides so compelling." Buck''s biggest influences span much of the twentieth century and include Johnny Cash, Jimmie Rodgers, Hank Williams, Bob Dylan, and The Band.

Perhaps best-known as one of the founding members of the alt-country band, Percival, Buck has been performing since the age of 16. He has toured and recorded as a solo artist, with his own band during the 1990s, and as a guitarist-sideman with a variety of rock, blues, and country acts. Originally from Cleveland, Buck has followed a journeyman''s path, playing with bands based in New York City, Ohio, Providence, and Kansas City. "I wouldn''t trade it," he says about his experiences playing barrooms far and wide. "Playing in so many different places, with musicians of different backgrounds, in a variety of styles really gave me an appreciation for music that incorporates diverse influences--and for the long tradition of touring singer-songwriters in this country--the American troubadours."

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