The B List: Digging Deep Bluegrass

1. David Lee Roth made a recent appearance on the Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson to promote Pickin’ On Van Halen. Does anyone have a creepier smile than D.L. Roth?


2. You wouldn’t expect Metallica’s music to translate well to bluegrass. But Gatlinburg’s Iron Horse does a pretty good job with the Metallica’s Fuel. Sure it’s kinda hard to take the aging lead singer seriously when he yells “Give me fuel, give me fire, give that which I desire,” but Iron Horse does great work with the harmonies. Is that Bobcat Goldthwait’s younger brother introducing the band?


3. Hayseed Dixie is the Weird Al of the bluegrass scene, often playing parody covers of popular tunes. The band started out as an AC/DC bluegrass cover band and has gone on to record their own songs, as well as covers from an extreme range of artists. My favorite Hayseed Dixie cover features the band playing Outkast’s Roses. There is just nothing like seeing hillbillies rap:


4. How about a band performing a bluegrass-tinged version of their own song? We got that too as the Barenaked Ladies change up One Week. I love how the drummer keeps the beat by shaking a little egg. Say what you will about this band, but these boys have mad skills:


5. Bob Weir joins the Waybacks for a cover of Led Zeppelin’s Kashmir. I never thought I’d hear Bobby channeling Robert Plant, but here it is:


6. You Ain’t Goin’ Nowhere is one of many Bob Dylan tunes that’s been covered by hundreds of artists. The mellow tune with a sweet chorus has been played by the likes of The Byrds, Phish, and the Counting Crows. Earl Scruggs and Friends do a fine version themselves, as you can see from this video filmed a few years ago:


7. Is there anything better then old dudes and a cute chick playing a tune called Young Folks? Dawn Landes and the WST Band do a fine job covering Peter, Bjorn, and John’s hipster anthem:


8. Did you really expect us to make it through this column without a Band cover? We wouldn’t want to disappoint. Check out Chris Thile and the How To Grow A Band’s stellar version of Ophelia:


9. You knew a Beatles cover would make this list, but did you know there was a band that strictly performed bluegrass-style Beatles covers? Dallas’ Beatlegras performs everything from Magical Mystery Tour to I Want To Hold Your Hand with the typical bluegrass instrumentation. Check out Beatlegras playing A Hard Day’s Night:


10. We couldn’t end this column without including Phish’s Les Claypool’s The Gourds’ epic take on Snoop Dogg’s Gin and Juice. These guys have made a career out of this cover. Even Snoop was impressed with The Gourds version of his tune. Here is a fan made video of the track from 1998’s Shinebox:


  • Previously on HT: Digging Deep Parts 1, 2, and 3

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2 Responses

  1. That Peter, Bjorn & John cover is interesting as hell…that’s a really really good tune, the original, and I like what they do with it, playing with both the music and the soul of it. I guess the same can be said for Roses, but I think that one’s a bit goofier, intentionally, than PB&J.

    Either way, great list again, Scotty.

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