"Outlaw Hillbilly" is the 5th CD by the Earl Brothers.It's been twelve years since The Earl Brothers started working on a style that has become their unique trademark, "Outlaw Hillbilly Music". The Earl Brothers have received an overwhelmingly enthusiastic response from music-lovers far and wide. In the October, 2010 issue of Bluegrass Unlimited, a feature article named band leader Robert Earl Davis "The Hillbilly Hero".
In the 1970s, The Ramones tore Rock and Roll down to its primitive components and built it back up again to make a raw, urgent, original music. The Earl Brothers have done the same with Bluegrass. Their gritty, mournful songs recall ancient honky-tonks, and Southern back roads with a unique edgy directness. Their music forgoes the softer contemporary acoustic sound of many modern day Bluegrass bands. The band's "less is more" approach to songwriting, singing, and musicianship is, direct, simple, and yet somehow different from everything else.
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"The best bluegrass out there! Sounds like real mountain music, not pop-country with a banjo riff".
"THE EARL BROTHERS HAVE GOT THE SOUL AND THE SONGS AND THE ATTITUDE THAT BROUGHT US ALL INTO BLUEGRASS MUSIC IN THE FIRST PLACE.THEIR SONGS CRY OF THE MOUNTAINS, OF THE PEOPLE AND OF THE TRADITIONS DOWN THROUGH THE AGES.
BLUEGRASS IS ALIVE AND WELL."
Pioneer of the genre known as "Country Rock".
Worked with such notable bands as The Byrds,
The Flying Burrito Brothers and the Desert Rose Band.
It's always a big event in my neck of the woods when a new Earl Brothers CD appears. I usually take the day off from work and stay at home--grilling red meat, drinking beer and blasting a few rounds through my .45. I think you guys are on to something that's so primeval, insistent, dark, old-time and thrilling that it just about defies description. I find myself completely mesmerized by your gothic Stanley Brothers sound. It just doesn't get anymore tough-edged and raw than tunes like "Going Walking," "Hell on the Highway," the title track and "Life Full of Trouble," which, if my ears aren't deceiving me sounds like it stays on just one chord throughout the piece. And what a chord it is! Congratulations, once again, on another job exceedingly well done.
Nashville Public Radio
The Earl Brothers
The Earl Brothers
Grant Alden once wrote that when encountering bluegrass you, "either run from the sound, or be changed forever." Place the impact of the Earl Brothers in the latter category.
San Francisco's Earl Brothers have their roots in the South, and favor twisted, dark experiences that peel skin from flesh. Left-coast zip codes notwithstanding, the Earl Brothers are mountain music, no doubt.
For their fourth album, the Earl Brothers have made transitions while remaining true to their roots and audience. The band's sound is fuller, more refined—certainly not slick or lacking spunk—but simply further along on an evolutionary journey. With fiddle introduced to the five-piece lineup, the rough-hewn, hardscrabble lead vocals and harmonies remain. In adding Tom Lucas's fiddle, the band has confidently moved toward (but definitely not into) the bluegrass mainstream.
Those fretting that Robert Earl Davis has abandoned his subject matter or distinctive style need not worry—no primary school, storybook romances here; Davis knows his audience expects things to be harshly lonesome. His protagonists remain rounders, ramblers, and broken-hearted fools fessin' up to messin' up with hard women and raw whiskey.
Of course, bluegrass requires that come Sunday morning some testifying be considered so that band takes a "Walk in the Light" singing in the "Sweet Bye and Bye."
Since 2005's Women, Whiskey, & Death, the Earl Brothers have consistently released recordings containing bright banjo-picking and unique vocals from Robert Earl Davis. In Danny Morris, Davis has a guitarist and vocal foil to provide tenor accenting his unconventional singing, while the mandolin of Larry Hughes washes over every song.
The band and this album aren't for everyone, and we've heard people praise and damn the band in equal measure. Compared to many receiving satellite airplay and label support, the Earl Brothers are progressive to the point of being traditional. They are the anti-corporate bluegrass band, those air-brushed (pictorially and musically) to the point of being unrecognizable while performing songs seemingly written with the aid of a couplet Wheel of Fortune and a committee of advisors. Simply put, there is nothing polished or contrived about The Earl Brothers.
With this new self-titled album, they have again demonstrated that they are confidently unwilling to compromise vision or execution.
Roots music Columnist
KCBL / Backroads Bluegrass
"First let me thank you very much for keeping me on your mailing list. "I REALLY LOVE YOUR MUSIC" as soon as i received your project i couldn't wait to get it home & play it !! After the first few notes, i heard the distinctive sound that you play so well. I could pick it out anywhere. everything is top notch. your original material has the sound & feel of times past. It has that rough edge gritty feel that many traditional bands lack today. this project has to be played several times in order to get the full impact. I played the whole project & my request line was ringing off the hook. I hope I don't wear it out!!"
thank you for sharing your fine project with us.
"I really enjoy your music.it harkens back to Bluegrass when it was really music of the people".
"This Is Bluegrass"
Now In It's 38th Year Of Syndication
88.5 WMNF-FM - Tampa, FL
The Earl Brothersthere is one thing on which everyone seems to agree. There is something about this band's 'less is more' approach to songwriting, singing and musicianship that makes you stop whatever you're doing and take notice.
For those who remember the goose-bumps they felt the first time they heard the high-lonesome sound of Bill Monroe or the otherworldly harmonies of the Stanley Brothers, that same thrill of discovery is being created all over again by the Earl Brothers. Unlike other traditional bluegrass bands that seek to re-create the music of the original bluegrass masters, The Earl Brothers are blazing their own trail, extending the genre, while simultaneously staying solidly within the gritty tradition that started in the 1940s and 50s. Listeners are left with a mix of exhilaration upon their first exposure to this new-yet-old form of music. As one listener remarked, "There is something mysterious that happens when the Earl Brothers take the stage. I don't know what it is, but I don't have to. I just know that something important is going on."
In the short time since the release of their third CD Moonshine, The Earl Brothers have received an overwhelmingly enthusiastic response from music-lovers, festival promoters, radio DJs, and music journalists across the country and abroad. CD orders and radio requests have been tumbling in from such far-flung locales as Australia, Belgium, France, Japan, the Netherlands, New Zealand, and even New York City!
The band is built around the unique vocal and songwriting attributes of Robert Earl Davis (Lead vocals, banjo), Danny Morris (Lead & tenor, vocals, guitar) the soulful Fiddle playing of Tom Lucas, and the driving bass of James Touzel.