For their fourth duo record, Eric Brace & Peter Cooper pay homage to their years spent in Washington DC. They cover songs written by -- or associated with -- such Washington folk and bluegrass artists as The Seldom Scene, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Emmylou Harris, John Jackson, The Rosslyn Mountain Boys, The Country Gentlemen, and more.
Produced by Thomm Jutz
In association with Eric Brace & Peter Cooper
For his fourth solo album, Depot Light, Peter Cooper has chosen to set aside his own powerful songwriting muse and record twelve breathtaking compositions by Eric Taylor. The Houston-based Taylor has been crafting his extraordinary songs for decades. A contemporary of Townes Van Zandt and Guy Clark, he's called "the Hemingway of our time" by Nanci Griffith, and if you don't know his body of work, these elegant interpretations (arranged by acoustic music maestro Thomm Jutz, with help from Justin Moses, Andrea Zonn, Pat McInerney, Mark Fain, and other stellar musicians), are an excellent place to begin your exploration. An album of depth and nuance, plot twists and texture, sadness and beauty.
Jerry Lawson, lead singer and founding member of The Persuasions, makes his solo debut at 71 years old. With help from Grammy-nominated producer Eric Brace, Jerry makes the thirteen songs on Just a Mortal Man his own, with elegance, heart, and soul. The album features songs from a diverse group of writers including Paul Simon, Robert Hunter, Ayo, Phil Lee, Peter Cooper, and Brace. And Jerry pays tribute to two of his heroes, recording tunes originally done by The Temptations’ David Ruffin and Bobby “Blue” Bland. The recordings feature a core band of Nashville's finest: Joe Pisapia on electric guitar and bass, Jen Gunderman on keyboards, and Duane Blevins on drums.
While guest musicians like Jim Lauderdale and The McCrary Sisters also make appearances on Just a Mortal Man, the album is about Jerry, singing with a sweet and smoky voice that's only grown richer throughout his 71 years.
"Raised On the Plains...brings to life a sweeping, sonic panorama of her literal and emotional pilgrimages." - Rolling Stone
"Lafser has a unique and raw balance of western folk sounds that are as blue as the Sea of Cortes...Her vocals are genuine, the music is simple and purposeful." - Ear to the Ground
By Eric Brace and Karl Straub, featuring performances by Kelly Willis, Tim O'Brien, Darrell Scott, Jason Ringenberg, John Wesley Harding, and Andrea Zonn.
Hangtown Dancehall is the story of two young lovers, Betsy and Ike, who leave their Missouri home for California during the Gold Rush. Eric first met the two characters in a folk song that he heard in his childhood in Placerville, California, the epicenter of the Gold Rush, known in the 1850s as Hangtown. That song, "Sweet Betsy From Pike," tells the story of Betsy and Ike's trek by wagon train across the continent. The song's final verses tell of their arrival in Hangtown but Eric decided that though that's the end of the song, it wasn't the end of the tale. With Hangtown Dancehall, Eric and Karl tell the rest of Betsy and Ike's story.
CD packaging includes lyrics and narrative in a 24-page booklet, featuring the art of Julie Sola.
Opening Day, Cooper's third solo album, features nine superb Peter Cooper originals as well as a compelling cover of Bill Morrissey’s “Birches,” hailed as one of the album’s “finest moments.”
"In short, it’s an album rippling with all the heart and humanity of a great Peter Cooper editorial." - CM Wilcox, Country California
"The sheer brilliance of the lyrics to Colfax/Step in Time alone justifies a top rating for the first album in seven years from this Southern-raised poet/rocker. Gordon sketches a not-so-simple portrait of a junior-high marching band on a bus trip, and every single image feels, tastes, smells and sounds absolutely true."
-Jerry Shriver, USA Today
"Full of lovely guitar touches and brimming with clever, mordant songs"
-Martin Chilton, The London Telegraph
"Clearly maintaining his standard, mature songwriting is married to some classy playing, whilst Jon's warm, slightly gruff but very relaxed singing holds the centre. ... Though he sings of heartbreak and regret, there's something enormously reassuring about Jon Byrd's music, a refuge in troubled times."
-John Davy, No Depression/Flyinshoes
"A mild cautionary note to big people; you too will get caught up in the infectious enthusiasm of Mark Horn’s delightful and charming renditions of these wonderful children’s songs.
The first time I heard Mark (Professor Smarty Pants) sing one of my songs I burst out laughing at his all-new take on the old song. He is original and has arrived on the scene at just the right time; meaning that they get to hear him before he has, as some any of us unfortunately do, grow up.
Join in the fun." -Tom T. Hall
Another stellar collection of original tunes from some of East Nashville's talented songwriters. This volume follows up the original East Nashville compilation, "The Other Side, Music from East Nashville," released in 2006, and the much lauded holiday CD, "Yuletide from the Other Side." This 19-track CD includes music from Phil Lee, Kieran Kane, Eric Brace, Peter Cooper, Anne McCue, Kevin Gordon, Chuck Mead, Elizabeth Cook, Matt Urmy, Carey Ott, Audrey Auld, Jon Byrd, Amelia White, Stephen Simmons, Tim Carroll, Duane Jarvis, Taylor Bates, and Tom Mason.
This rollicking live recording by the acclaimed roots rock band Last Train Home shows the band at their absolute best. The show was recorded at IOTA Club and Cafe, just outside Washington, DC, a place that the band has called its home base for more than 10 years, logging more than 200 shows there. Now based in Nashville, Eric Brace and Last Train Home recorded the show for a 100-minute DVD and also released this CD version of a very special night. The band that night was Eric Brace (acoustic guitar, lead vocals), Kevin Cordt (trumpet), Jim Gray (bass), Jen Gunderman (keyboards, accordian), Martin Lynds (drums), Dave Van Allen (pedal steel), Chris Watling (baritone & tenor saxophones) and Steve Wedemeyer (electric guitar).
"Peter Cooper looks at the world with an artist's eye and a human heart and soul. His songs are the work of an original, creative imagination, alive with humor and heartbreak and irony and intelligence, with truth and beauty in the details. Deep stuff. And they get better every time you listen to them." -Kris Kristofferson
Last Train Home, the much-lauded roots rock band, celebrated their 10-year anniversary by recording a live DVD at IOTA nightclub in DC, their home base, clubhouse and all-around favorite venue. At the top of their game, Eric Brace and Last Train Home rock the house in this awesome 100-minute live concert DVD.
Following on the heels of the acclaimed collection of East Nashville music, The Other Side (2006), comes Yuletide From the Other Side, a splendid compilation of 37 songs of seasonal cheer. Once again, the tunes are courtesy of East Nashville's booming music scene. Two CDs packed with December fun, but that you can listen to all year long.
"If there’s a consistency to the songs on this album, it’s that they’re all consistently excellent. Brace delivers the vocals with sincerity and authenticity that is nearly devastating—every note and phrase rings of heart-felt and life-lived truth. And if there is a better vocalist working the scene at this time, I really don’t know who it could be. His voice is colored in turns by passion, weariness, elation, and angst. Eric Brace is the real deal. “Last Good Kiss” is a significant step forward in the evolution of a great band, and could very well be the best album of their career. This gets my highest recommendation." - Hermon Joyner, Audiophile Audition
"A seamless and stirring mesh of talent...While this nearly all-acoustic set does feature some bluegrassy moments, the album defies easy categorization...All of it is held together by the sublimely soulful feeling that is a hallmark of Last Train Home." - Nick Cristiano, Philadelphia Inquirer
Bound Away features the band's globally acclaimed alt-country sound, but also shows more varied influences at work. The record's emotional centerpiece, "Hendersonville" is lead singer and songwriter Eric Brace's stunning tribute to Johnny Cash and June Carter Cash, one that avoids the potential pitfalls of tribute songs, and stands alone as a fully realized work. There's a deep sense of place in these songs. From the howling dogs of East Nashville in "Dogs on the East Side," to the farm and fields of "They Dance Real Close There," to the Arkansas train in "Marlene," to the Western landscapes of the closing instrumental "Bound Away," all the songs seem to carry a little bit of dirt. Passionate music from a band at the top of their game.
"You can tell a lot about a group you haven't heard sometimes by the songs they cover. This is one of those instances because their studio albums are all first-rate." - Village Records
This modest offering is a collection of songs that we've contributed over the years to various tribute and compilation CDs. These are songs that have gotten under our skins one way or another, and we're happy to have this chance to share them with you.
A mounful, country-tinged aching pervades much of Last Train Home's second album. You can hear it even when the band kicks things into high gear, as it does on such tracks as Eric Brace's own "Louisiana" and Buck Owens' "Heartbreak Mountain". Most of the album, though, unfolds unhurriedly, highlighting the richly layered texture of the band's country-rock and the soulful melancholy at the heart of their songs and in the voice of singer-guitarist Eric Brace.
"Last Train Home shows it has the goods to stick around for a good long while..." -The Journal Newspapers
"Last Train Home's eponymous debut album resonates with love songs, more often than not the sad, haunting and unresolved kind. It's the stuff of great country music, of course, but [the band is] careful not to let unruly honky-tonk romps get in the way of tortured or torchy heartache." -Washington Post