(self-produced, 2002)

A little bluegrass, some jam band styling, a little jazz and great fun will be found on Bluestring's Overthinking. The dynamics of their musical influences leave Bluestring with a sound all their own. Their music may remind you of the Dave Matthews Band, though blended with funk and Latin undertones.

Intricate guitar work begins the jam "Professor Debreeze" as the drums pick up tempo with mellow notes from a saxophone, then leading brilliantly into "Dinosaur." Clay Evans' expressive lead vocals along with the band's diverse instruments from the fiddle, mandolin and saxophone create the framework.

"Your Recovery" is a great example of their bluegrass sound and entertaining lyrics. Evans' songwriting was inspired by Bruce Hornsby, Paul Simon, James Taylor, Phil Collins and Stevie Wonder. The instrumentation delivery in "Temporary Relief" further demonstrates the band's diverse musical influences.

"To Be Satisfied" remains my favorite track, with its high-energy sound and lively lyrics. The mandolin work is fabulous, with upbeat drums and background saxophone for the full effect. Brad Thomas's sax is a treat for the ears throughout the disc, and his influences derive from Miles Davis, Coltrane, Stevie Wonder, Morphine and Radiohead.

"Overthinking was our first full-length effort and our first go round in making our sound 'come together' for the listener. I think now, working on our second full-length album, we have much more direction and maturity with our sound," Evans has explained.

Clay Evans and Ted Pennington met in high school where they learned their craft. Evans was on acoustic guitar and lead vocals, while Pennington played the mandolin and fiddle. The band met during their college years in Athens, Ga., a thriving music scene where the band honed their sound. Bluestring officially came together four years ago, beginning with Evans, Pennington and Bakari Brock, their manager on drums. Bassist Chuck Thomas and Nick Prince on percussions were added next. In March 2001, Brad Thomas was invited to complete the last piece of the puzzle.

When Bakari stepped down to manage them full-time, Evans' long-time friend Jason Jones took to the drums.

Bluestring has been busy recording their second album in Atlanta with Billy Hume, due out January 2003. The band's goal is to establish themselves as a national touring act, so they can reach as many people across the country as possible with their high-energy music.

- Rambles
written by Lisa Comento
published 18 January 2003

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