We take our seats in the comfortable and cozy living room-like auditorium. I have seen the duo four times and it always surprises me how powerful they are and how deeply their music touches me. They have a countrified playing and singing style that seems to gently draw from the Appalachia, Tennessee, or the Deep South, but they have continued to re-contextualize that experience and make it their own.
They walk onto the stage, clad in well-worn cowboy boots and vintage clothing, and begin the show with several selections from their new album "The Harrow and the Harvest", 2011. They are clear and precise in their work, singing some of the saddest songs that you might imagine. There is also humor in their lyrics and the perspective of a well-honed observer that seeks the depth and breadth of what music and words can deliver. They use an array of instruments that includes Gillian on vocals, guitar, banjo, harmonica, hands and feet; David on vocals, harmonica, banjo, guitar, string bass, and optigan.
You can also download two selections by Gillian and David from Freegal: "Miners Prayer" from "The Songs of Dwight Yokum", and from "A Tribute to John Hartford" live from Mountain Stage, "In Tall Buildings".