Voices of a Grateful Nation
Volume One: Texas Rock, Blues & Folk; Volume Two: Texas Country & Americana
Reviewed by Jim Caligiuri, Fri., Nov. 28, 2008
Voices of a Grateful NationVolume One: Texas Rock, Blues & Folk (Welcome Home Project)
Voices of a Grateful NationVolume Two: Texas Country & Americana (Welcome Home Project)
Whether your political stripe is blue, red, or somewhere in between, all Americans rally around the concept of supporting our troops. Produced by the Welcome Home Project, a group of Texas-based music and media professionals, the first two Voices of a Grateful Nation anthologies center on local artists with the proceeds benefiting members of the armed services who served in foreign conflicts post-9/11. While the music varies wildly from track to track and disc to disc, the songs all concern the soldier at war, at peace, or coming home. Yet whether maudlin or uplifting, the performances are uniformly first-rate with the bluegrassy "Shipping Out to Iraq Blues," a duet by Jesse Dayton and Johnny Bush; the righteous "We'll Have Peace Some Day" by Lavelle White and Guitar Shorty; and Sally and Bukka Allen's hymn, "Everyone Has Faded" immediately standing out. Others making appearances include long-timers Charlie Louvin, Ray Benson, Rusty Wier, Carolyn Wonderland, Malford Milligan, and Jimmy LaFave, as well as relative newcomers Dustin Welch, the Band of Heathens, and Brennen Leigh. With a little for anyone with a taste for roots music, both discs make interesting spins and a relatively pain-free way of showing support for war veterans.