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Back Porch Orchestra

“Volume I”

 by Charlton Wiggins

  Simply titled “Volume 1” the debut album from Back Porch Orchestra is a light and lively romp through fourteen original numbers by this highly talented bluegrass/country group from Burlington, NC. Just as their live performance is an exhilarating display of exquisite musicianship, so too is the wonderful songwriting skills demonstrated on “Volume 1.”

  Behind the principle vocals of Jeremy Brady and Bonnie Reed each song on Volume I comes to life with vivid clarity against the backdrop of simple intelligent instrumentation that bring together the essences of country, bluegrass, blues and a little bit of rock. Brady and Chris Reed offer up wonderful guitar work with Jeremy also providing banjo and pedal steel licks while Chris indulges the mandolin when necessary and bassist Keith Miller adds the bass lines. While the instrumentation is top notch it is the vocals of Bonnie Reed that sets this group apart and above others. Bonnie’s vocals have an alluring and haunting quality reminiscent of Emmylou Harris. From "Wherever," the leadoff song, to "Favorite Pair of Blue-jeans" to the almost anthem-like "Who Am I" Back Porch Orchestra has an intoxicating allure.

   This wonderful collection of original songs will leave an indelible impression and a thirst for a “Volume II,” and the group also sports a delightful Christmas album as well.

   Back Porch Orchestra has gone through some lineup changes over time. Jeremy (who toured with rocker Daughtry for a time) only occasionally sits in with the group now and Chris’s brother Scott has replaced Miller on bass. With other musicians coming and going it is the husband-wife duo of Chris and Bonnie who represent the core and heart of this extremely talented group, sought after by club owners who know they bring fans through the doors.