January 2020 – ‘Be Still Moses’ re-works the acoustic group’s old songs with the help of the Asheville Symphony Orchestra’ by Stephen L. Betts
On the heels of their genre-hopping collaboration with pop-R&B group Boyz II Men, Asheville, North Carolina bluegrass superstars Steep Canyon Rangers have teamed with the Asheville Symphony Orchestra for the March 6th release of their latest LP, Be Still Moses. The forthcoming album reworks nearly a dozen of the Grammy-winning band’s hit tunes and rare cuts, melding the Rangers’ earthy, organic sound with the symphony’s lush string arrangements, and further shining a spotlight on Asheville’s close-knit artistic community.
The latest track to be unveiled from the new project is an update of the title cut from the group’s chart-topping 2015 album, Radio. Nominated in its original version for IBMA Song of the Year, this invigorating “Radio” redux fine-tunes the song’s nostalgic sense of youthful discovery, and powerful memories frequently conjured from hearing certain songs.
“We’ve been lucky to perform these songs with some great conductors over the last few years, but the opportunity to record them with our hometown symphony and the combination of [Asheville-based music producer] Michael Selverne and [arranger] Michael Bearden was too good to pass up,” says Steep Canyon Rangers’ singer and banjo player Graham Sharp. “To hear the power and sweep of a full symphony behind these songs is truly amazing.”
“It was such a cool yet unusual experience to work as a band on a collection of songs we’ve recorded over the years and have performed live hundreds of times, by adding the ASO and Michael Selverne,” notes the band’s Woody Platt. “This brought the songs to a new place with an entirely new life and sound. We also recorded with the band in a truly live setting to capture the energy of the performance.”
Be Still Moses represents more than a decade of the band’s original material, spanning from the new album’s title track and “Call the Captain,” both taken from their 2007 LP, Lovin’ Pretty Women, through “Let Me Out of This Town” and “Farmers and Pharoahs,” both from 2018’s Out in the Open.
Be Still Moses track listing:
- “Easy to Love”
- “Be Still Moses” (with Boyz II Men)
- “Call the Captain”
- “Let Me Out of This Town”
- “Blow Me Away”
- “Between Midnight and the Dawn”
- “Las Vegas”
- “Farmers and Pharaohs”
- “The Mountain’s Gonna Sing”
- “Auden’s Train”