The grandson of legendary bluegrass pioneer Dr. Ralph Stanley continues to branch out musically with his first-ever country album.
Rest assured, though, that Nathan Stanley is not forsaking the roots of old-time mountain music that he firmly established from age two as a spoon player with the Clinch Mountain Boys. On My Kind Of Country, the fourth solo CD for the 18-year-old prodigy, Stanley assembled an all-star cast of singers including his famous grandfather, of course, along with Del McCoury, Ricky Skaggs, Rhonda Vincent, Larry Sparks, Vince Gill, Gene Watson, Little Jimmy Dickens, Patty Loveless, Marty Stuart, Jim Lauderdale, Connie Smith, the Isaacs, and John Anderson.
Stanley sifted through hundreds of country standards before deciding upon classics like the Johnny Cash penned tunes “Folsom Prison Blues” and “I Still Miss Someone,” Buck Owens’s “Love’s Gonna Live Here Again,” Hank Williams’ “I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry” and “You Win Again.” Naturally, he couldn’t leave out the connection to his Stanley heritage, recording a couple of Carter Stanley compositions, “Think Of What You’ve Done” and “The White Dove,” and Dr. Ralph’s gospel staples, “Angel Band” and “The Darkest Hour Is Just Before Dawn.” While Nathan honors his bluegrass bloodline, he clearly is blazing his own trail musically, as evidenced by his own vocal talents on this traditionally country project. (Stanley Generation Records, 9 Music Square S., Ste. 351, Nashville, TN 37203, www.drralphstanley.com.) BC