Will Kimbrough, Red Dirt Boy From Lower Alabama
Tonight in Copenhagen, Will Kimbrough is scheduled to take the stage as one of Emmylou’s Red Dirt Boys. Emmylou and the “Boys” are starting a tour in support of her new album, Hard Bargain. After Copenhagen, they’ll hit Stockholm, Gothenburg, Dublin, Glasgow, Manchester, London, Bruges, Amsterdam, Munic, Frankfurt and Berlin before coming back to the States, where they’ll play Telluride on June 17. More touring to come after that, too. Here’s the full schedule.
2010 was very good for Will Kimbrough. 2011 seems to be more of the same. The last time I got to see him play was July, 2010. That was on live national television, with Jimmy Buffett and the Coral Reefers in the Gulf Shores Oil Spill show. Here’s Buffett bragging on Will (and extolling his Lower Alabama roots) before they do Nobody From Nowhere, one of several Will Kimbrough songs Buffett has recorded:
Will played quite a bit with Buffett in 2010, but that wasn’t all he was up to. He released a solo record, Wings, in February, and toured in support of it. It’s a great record. The title cut also made its way onto Buffett’s album, Buffet Hotel. Don’t tell Jimmy, but I prefer Will’s version:
Will is a Renaissance Man. Use of that term to describe him is not original with me, but it fits. And it is not an overstatement. Besides writing songs, Will is a great instrumentalist. He’s a former winner of the Americana Music Association’s Instrumentalist of the Year. His ability to play just about anything with strings (principally guitar) has him in the studio with someone just about all the time (in the past few months he played on records for Angela Easterling and Gretchen Peters, to name two). He has a solo act and a band (Daddy, his project with Tommy Womack). On top of all this, he sometimes tours with other great musicians. The latest of these is Emmylou, but she isn’t the first. Will played with Todd Snider for a few years (and produced two of his albums, East Nashville Skyline and The Devil You Know). He also spent a lot of time in the studio and on the road with Rodney Crowell. I had the pleasure of seeing him play with Crowell during that time. Here’s a brief clip of Crowell’s I Walk The Line Revisited, with Will singing the Johnny Cash part:
It’s great when someone good does well. All of Will Kimbrough’s fans (and I am firmly in that camp) are very proud of him these days. Here’s hoping that the European tour goes well. When they get to Telluride on June 17, I’ll be on my tarp with a New Belgium beer in a bio-degradable cup, ready to take it in. Can’t wait.